Truth Be Bold


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In truth be bold, Julene Tripp Weaver stands at night in the open air and sings beneath the window of HIV, odes and elegies to the virus in her body, in her work, her life, her deaths, deaths of friends, lovers, social work clients, of aging and loving and mourning with HIV, of going on, day by day, one life passage at a time. It is the kind of testament and testimony that could only come from a witness who has lived a long time with the virus in her and all around her, a coming out story unlike any we have seen before.

—Michael Broder, Drug and Disease Free and This Life Now

Historical and deeply emotional, the historian or journalist’s objectivity ripped away, this raw, honest poetry of Julene Tripp Weaver won’t leave you alone. It will slowly crawl under your skin and infect you, leaving its mind-tracks, like verbal scabies. It will caress your skin, and mark you, like KS lesions—because this is the poet’s work—to chart for the collective the hidden virus lurking in all of us: Death, and the myriad ways in which It takes us over. 

—Andrew Ramer, Modern Jewish Stories and Torah Told Different: Stories for a Pan/Poly/Post-Denominational World and Queering the Text: Biblical, Medieval

Julene Tripp Weaver’s truth be bold is a powerful, readable, nearly-impossible-to-put-down, boundary-crossing coming-out collection. Weaver writes authentically about difficult but important things. She’s a hawk for truth; her unflinching gaze guides us through a work of frustration, love, sadness, survival, death, and compassion. “Inside desire lies/the truth of blood —/longing to live a full life, a natural death.” If you only read one book of poetry this year, make it count—make it this one.

—Jan Steckel, The Horizontal Poet

Artwork © 2014 By Duane Kirby Jensen, 38 3/4 x 73, Mixed media on Paper (The overall painting is made up of 6 independent sheets 19 1/2 x 24)

Cover art: Kayt Hoch