A Dead Name That Learned How To Live

“Hell, I know my superpower! I stare back 
at the solo sun & think, I could take you
down, right to the cool core if my mother asked it of me, 
or if I thought my father would
write it in his will, or on a simple day. 
See, I’m less scared of spiders than of what it could be like if
some people fly out the window of this world’s womb web 
& I never got the chance to reach for them, to tell them,
Save your last look for a better tragedy.
Fighting, scar-sweet in scarlet, measured 
like a middle finger, might not be a love song 
in your neighborhood but I’m a country bitch.”


An honest lyric, a mighty harpoon straight from the heart, Golden’s debut full-length,  A Dead Name That Learned How To Live weaves poems, family photographs, and self-portraits to share a journey of survival and living in the American south. Exploring themes of loss and legacy, nation and love language, forgiveness and fortitude, Blackness and being, Golden continually asks–What shifts within and around us when we choose to name ourselves and our kin here–our tragedy and triumphs, our human failures and feelings, our desires to be free? Releasing on their parent’s 30th wedding anniversary (August 29th, 2022) as a dedicated love letter and living archive, this debut is an awe and ode towards southern Virginia & Eastern Shore Maryland, Black family pasts, presents, and futures, to Black queer beginnings and belongings outside and within the family home.

By Golden
Published by Game Over Books, 2022