Black Calculus

Black Calculus


Black Calculus is about the essence of what connects us to each other, as well as to the living environment that surrounds us. This collection focuses on the love that is devoted to the dream of justice for all and the mandate to love one another.



Black Calculus is indeed the fabrics of space singing to you. And you can find Mr. Mattox, in a poem, picking tea leaves from the cities’ jungle floors, returning with lyrics of fate. He must have written these poems for a bandstand. He must have raised himself in a saxophone case.

Tongo Eisen-Martin, 8th Poet Laureate of San Francisco, author of Heaven Is All Goodbyes and someone’s dead already


The heartscape is the territory of Black Calculus, expansive as the fullness of each breath reminding us that, despite everything, we are indeed alive! Norm Mattox invites us to the question “Who does love belong to?” In the formula of these poems, love belongs to all, as an equal sign between us, as powerful gale force winds, as ancestral wisdom and village healing. As readers, we are called to our deepest breath, our deepest loves, our deepest purpose. Love is daddy's spirit at the beach, the curving harmony of mama’s song. It is galaxy and universe; human essence. Norm Mattox is a teacher, student, and practitioner of love as social justice and transformation. In these pages, love will always add up.” 

norma liliana valdez, author of Preparing the Body


‘Falling, shifting, carrying,’ are just some of the themes you should expect from Norm Mattox’s collection Black Calculus. Here the poet expresses all the ways we use the word love by pulling it through the ringer of constructs we have created around it. If you are in need of a wakeup call, this collection is for you.

Thomas Fucaloro, author of The Only gardening I Do is When I Give Up