Cover image for Yes, you are a revolutionary! : plus seven other books
Yes, you are a revolutionary! : plus seven other books
Corporate Author:
Publication Information:
New York : Soft Skull Press, [2002]

Physical Description:
iv, 130 pages : illustrations ; 13 cm
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
PS3569.P367 Y47 2002 Adult Mass Market Paperback Non-Fiction Area

On Order



Written over a period of several years, Yes, You Are a Revolutionary! is a collection of six works by the renowned street poet Sparrow. He reveals how to be a happy revolutionary, offers haunting poems on the underside of the class struggle, and includes tonal pieces celebrating adolescence. In addition to the title piece, the book includes "Dinosaur Haiku," "Cooking with Ice," "Marxist Rhythms," "Jealous Cops," and "Morning Poems." "Over and above everything else, Sparrow offers something to believe in." -- The Village Voice

Reviews 1

Publisher's Weekly Review

Sparrow's cult hero status was firmly cemented by Republican Like Me, his 1997 tale of his bid for the White House. Compiling a number of serial poems, this little red book brings together a diverse group of works that make the disruptive, utopian energy of the '60s seem perfectly contemporary. The title work provides, in 23 brief but comprehensive chapters, the steps to social upheaval, covering topics that range from selecting a "revolutionary pet" to a recipe for preparing "The People's Polenta." Other sections, such as "Jealous Cops," rely on an urban, universalizing wit that offhandedly acknowledges particularity: "The man next/ to me falls/ asleep,/ and his Greek/ newspaper hits/ the floor." The animating mystery throughout is at what points Sparrow is actually exhibiting wide-eyed naivet and during which portions his tongue is planted firmly in cheek. Thus Sparrow's voice successfully links the different projects within the larger volume. The child-like playing around of "Dinosaur Haiku" produces such delight as "a pteranodon/ lands on a/ bleisafosaur," taking pleasure in names-as-complicated-sounds. "Cheering the Sphinx" uses similar logic to send up contemporary jingoism perfectly; it reads in its entirety: "Hooray, Sphinx! Go, Sphinx!/ Come on, Sphinx! Yes, Sphinx!/ We're with you, Sphinx! Yay,/ Sphinx! Go, Sphinx, go!" Even the New Yorker has found Sparrow's enthusiasm contagious and published several poems (Sparrow helpfully chronicles the process in "Two Poems of Mine the New Yorker Published"); look for this pocket-sized volume to turn up in the back of SUVs as often as at Washington Mall protests. (Jan.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved