Weren’t We Natural Swimmers by Aliah Lavonne Tigh

Weren’t We Natural Swimmers is an invitation to look deeply at disasters made intimate and personal — dead and dying fathers and uncles in a landscape of burning refineries, flooded rooms and a looming never-ending war. Despite this terrifying world, despite heartbreak, Aliah Lavonne Tigh celebrates “the beauty our eyes can unhide,” the luminous natural world still present and wondrous.

-Ching-In Chen, author of recombinant

Pleasure and beauty pulse with stubborn purpose in Aliah Lavonne Tigh’s debut. The poems, orbiting the climate change front lines in Houston, reveal the physical and physic aftermath of ecological disaster – the unwelcomed flood waters intermingle with economic sanctions, domestic warfare, the erotic, grief, family, the divine, ecology, and the osmosis of pain. Through vivid juxtaposition, electric lyric, and braided narrative, an ardent and unflinching argument for a new American pastoral emerges.

Aliah Lavonne Tigh’s poems have been featured in GuernicaThe Texas ReviewMatter MonthlyStoryscapeThe Rupture, and others. Tigh has joined other writers for the Tin House Summer Workshop, read for Houston’s Poison Pen Reading Series and Hess Reading Series, contributed work for a Gulf Coast Journal and Texas Contemporary ekphrastic collaboration and was a grateful Recipient of Idyllwild Arts’ 2017 Bentley-Buckman Writing Fellowship. She holds poetry and philosophy degrees from the University of Houston and an MFA from Antioch Los Angeles. Tigh lives in Houston, Texas. You can follow her at @Alovetigh on Twitter.

ALT Cover Draft

Weren’t We Natural Swimmers by Aliah Lavonne Tigh

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