Fall 2021 Poetry Preview: Umbilical Cord by Hasan Namir | Book*hug Press

Fall 2021 Poetry Preview: Umbilical Cord by Hasan Namir

Umbilical Cord by Hasan Namir

It’s time to meet the Fall 2021 authors and their books! We’ll be diving more deeply into the seven books we introduced in our Fall 2021 season reveal, previewing individual titles and sharing exclusive excerpts and thoughts from the authors.

Our Fall preview series continues with a sneak peek at Hasan Namir’s sophomore poetry collection, Umbilical Cord, which Chantal Gibson calls “an intimate exploration of a new family forming and transforming in and against the tug and pull of generational, cultural and societal expectations.” Umbilical Cord is a heartfelt book for parents or would-be parents. These warm free-verse poems document the journey that Namir and his husband took to have a child. Between love letters to their young son, Namir shares insight into his love story with his husband, the complexities of the IVF surrogacy process and the first year as a family of three. Umbilical Cord is a joyful collection about parenting, fatherhood and hope.

“Tender. Touching,” writes Betsy Warland. “[T]his book-length poetic narrative reminds me of Neruda’s Twenty Love Poems: ‘Every day you play with the light of the universe.’ Namir’s love poems to his infant son and partner (interspersed with photos), remind me of Neruda’s poems interspersed with Picasso’s drawings. Umbilical Cord: two art forms; two fathers—the narrative of family made anew.”

We’re delighted to share an introductory video from Hasan Namir, which includes an adorable cameo from his son, Malek. Enjoy!

In addition, we’ve selected an excerpt from the book, which you can read and enjoy below. Umbilical Cord will be released on September 14th, 2021, and is available now for pre-order, either from our online shop or from your local independent bookstore.


Umbilical Cord by Hasan Namir


Time is the fleeting space between us
Months passed like seconds
Feeling separated, tears dwelling
I write this poem as a parent
Anxieties overflowing me
I miss you when you’re learning
I’m writing this poem
When time is perpetual
Our emotions are cyclical
I wrote this poem outside
My heart a see-saw of emotions
Until I saw your smile outside

Hasan Namir is an Iraqi-Canadian author. He graduated from Simon Fraser University with a BA in English and received the Ying Chen Creative Writing Student Award. He is the author of God in Pink (2015), which won the Lambda Literary Award for Best Gay Fiction and was chosen as one of the Top 100 Books of 2015 by The Globe and Mail. His work has also been in media across Canada. He is also the author of poetry book War/Torn (2019, Book*hug Press) which received the 2020 Barbara Gittings Honor Book Award from the Stonewall Book Awards, and children’s book The Name I Call Myself (2020). Hasan lives in Vancouver with his husband and child.

Stay tuned on the Book*hug blog for more previews, exclusive excerpts and thoughts from our Fall 2021 authors, and if you haven’t already done so, follow us on Facebook, Instagram, TikTok, and Twitter.

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