- By Candice Mallory
camil.williams’ Cold Sweat is a work that digs deep into the thoughts and emotions of a culture seldom seen as honestly as she has given it to her readers. Her no nonsense portrayal of truths and often uncomfortable questions make it obvious that this isn’t your “roses are red, violets are blue” type of anthology. The journey takes you to every stoop in America and forces you to face what’s across the street and in the mirror.
Cold Sweat tackles the concepts of identity, community, and ethnicity, to name a few. She challenges the stigmas of America, Black America, women, black women, mothers, and children. Both thought provoking and feeling, the personalities and instances given in her naked portrayal of life will leave all who read it with an addition to their lives.
As an artisan of both poetry and art, the rawness of her words can only be matched by the strokes of her brush. It’s her talent for making her vision accessible that allows others to become a part of the world she is giving you access. Growing up on the Southside of Chicago, camil’s stories give us direct access to her community. Her willingness to put herself and her perspective on display are what make her a treasure to those not only within her pages, but those lucky enough to discover her as well. It’s her authenticity that sets her apart from her peers and allows her to tell the tales of others in a way that takes them from an individual to a shared experience.
To sample the poetry in the book, click here.
"...reminds me of a range of influences: Gwendolyn Brooks describing a. . . nice girl who 'gets sick of a rose," the terse unabashed vernacular of June Jordan and the hard punctuations of The Roots varied rhythms . . . I keep thinking of how intersectionality creates a voice like this - a self aware, critical woman of color..."
- Tara Betts, Professor and Author of Arc & Hue
"...Cold Sweat, is lyrical, expressive, evocative and passionate. Cold Sweat covers everything from matters of the heart, to politics, race and much more. If you're a poetry lover, you gotta check it out. If you're not a poetry lover, this might just change your mind."
- Crunk Feminist Collective, Best of Summer 2013
Butta to Fly 2007
"camil’s voice resonates all that a conscious writer of the 21st century must possess: truth, respect for language, insight-fulness, and a sincere heart."
--Nichole L. Shields,
Author/Gwendolyn Brooks Archivist
It’s what poetry should be, what freedom could be, and what the hip-hop generation needs. camil.williams is a real and refreshing voice that demands to be heard."
--Gwendolyn D. Pough,
Associate Professor and Author of Check It While I Wreck It:
BlackWomanhood, Hip-Hip Culture and the Public Sphere
Aqua Beats and Moon Verses,
camil.willams and veronica 'Precious" bohanan
"The voice (in Aqua Beats and Moon Verses: Volume I) is strong and brave, often swirling and soaring with the zeal of true spiritual questing. The writing style is hip, colorful and there is a wonderful buzz of energy in the writing (and the music) that makes you want to bust through every wall of bs and suppression. It’s like a newage Allen Ginsberg rant at America, spelled with a k. These poets are all about encouraging African-American woman to free themselves in order to self-define their roles in the Black community, hip hop culture and overall society."