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Grace C. Ocasio’s The Speed of Our Lives reviewed in Blind Beggar Press’s newsletter The Lantern.

Grace C. Ocasio’s The Speed of Our Lives reviewed in Blind Beggar Press’s newsletter The Lantern.

Grace C. Ocasio is a former New Yorker now living in Charlotte, NC. Her poetry collection, The Speed of Our Lives, is an exceptional example of fine poetry. It’s thoughtful, intelligent and consistently engaging. Her diverse range of subject matter- Angela David, Greta Garbo, the city of Charlotte, Anne Frank, bible characters and so much more – demonstrate her world view and keeps the reader fascinated to read more. She has a way with words that is personal yet universally understood and it is difficult to put her book down. Hers is a unique voice that needs to be heard.

Reviewed by C. D. Grant

Investigate Grace C. Ocasio’s The Speed of Our Lives

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Women and Ghosts by Kristina Marie Darling Now Available!

Why is there so much language, so many words I didn't want." Darling's collection interrogates a legacy of literary women that haunt our subconscious through paralleling a female narrator's mental strife alongside Shakespeare's tragic women: Ophelia, Juliet, Desdemona, Cleopatra, and more. Darling follows the trails of blood left on the page to explore violence done to women, both emotionally and physically. Through Darling's innovative forms, she's able to render the classical refreshingly new and chillingly devastating. Her writing, however, hits a more sensitive nerve: the terror of gendered violence and the chafing of powerlessness in womanhood, as her characters "cleave under the weight of my own dress." Yet, power is embedded in Darling's words, sharp and cutting as a razor blade: this is a collection all women should read.

—Anne Champion, author of Reluctant Mistress and The Dark Length Home

Women and Ghosts is a book for the brokenhearted: "Iced over with sadness," its speaker says (or doesn't), "I can no longer speak." In ghost text stricken from the record, she also says (or doesn't): "I wonder how someone else's life can seem so much my own." She means Desdemona's. Ophelia's. Juliet's. Cleopatra's. Lavinia's. But when I read these words, I think: not theirs, hers — I wonder how her life can seem so much my own. I love this book. I honor it. I cherish it. I lose myself in its tragedies, in the absences and silences of women's lives and I feel less desperate, less anxious, less alone.

—Molly Gaudry, author of We Take Me Apart and Desire: A Haunting

Kristina Marie Darling is the author of over twenty collections of poetry and hybrid prose. Her awards include fellowships from Yaddo, the Ucross Foundation, the Helene Wurlitzer Foundation, and the American Academy in Rome, as well as grants from the Elizabeth George Foundation, the Kittredge Fund, the Ora Lerman Trust, and the Rockefeller Foundation Archive Center. She is currently working toward both a Ph.D. in English Literature at S.U.N.Y.-Buffalo and an M.F.A. in Poetry at New York University.

Book Information:

· Paperback: 74 pages

· Binding: Perfect-Bound

· Publisher: BlazeVOX [books] 

· ISBN: 978-1-60964-219-8


Pre-Orders Welcome


Women and Ghosts by Kristina Marie Darling Book Preview

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All Beautiful And Useless by C. Kubasta Now Available!

C. Kubasta’s All Beautiful & Useless is a fearless book. With an amazing range of forms—including sonnets, erasures and a screenplay—these poems ask us to investigate “the sudden violence/done to childhood when you trust too much.” Poems about the Salem Witch Trials, Thumbelina, Cinderella, the victims of serial killer Ed Gein, as well as poems from the poet’s own experience explore the devastating violence that is so often inflicted on female bodies. These poems demand our attention. A remarkable debut collection.

—Nicole Cooley, author of Breach

From a fresh consideration of the Salem witch trials, C. Kubasta’s All Beautiful & Useless launches into autobiography rendered in a masterful array of forms, voices, and rhythms. Re-constructed delivery methods such as sonnets, personal lyrics, and a playlet blend with incorporations of Big Government’s strategic redactions, computer code, academic lingo, and Modernist explorations of the line to produce a book improbably personal and deeply moving. This book knocks me flat.

—Mike Smith, author of Multiverse and Byron in Baghdad

In this striking and incisive collection, Kubasta wants to “know what is used – what is wasted,” even though knowing can’t resurrect or heal. All Beautiful & Useless is built on such scars, but also on “old encyclopedias, hopelessly / out of date, yet true.” Bared and bearing it, Kubasta carries us through memory and erudition to a garage packed with what makes us human. She opens the boxes because she must. Inside is one honest song. It’s this book.

—Dan Rosenberg, author of cadabra

I have long admired Kubasta’s exploratory combination of citation, history, and autobiography in her texts. Her work is always exciting, sometimes even alarming. In her poems using the metaphor of the box, I’m reminded of Joseph Cornell, of course, but also of the great Serbian poet Vasko Popa. The reader doesn’t know whether he/she is outside looking in or inside looking out, but one certainly remembers that Yeats said that a good poem should snap shut – like a box -- and hopes for the best.

—John Matthias

C. Kubasta experiments with hybrid forms, excerpted text, and shifting voices –her work has been called claustrophobic and unflinching. Her favorite rejection (so far) noted that one editor loved her work, and the other hated it. A Lovely Box (Finishing Line Press, 2013) won the Wisconsin Fellowship of Poets Chapbook Prize. Her poetry has appeared in So To Speak, Stand, The Notre Dame Review, Tinderbox Poetry Review and Lemon Hound, among other places, and she writes a regular column for The Rain, Party & Disaster Society on teaching, writing and reading. All Beautiful & Useless (BlazeVOX, 2015) is her first book. She writes, teaches and lives in Wisconsin with her beloved John, geriatric cat Cliff and St. Bernard-mix Ursula.

Book Information:

· Paperback: 106 pages

· Binding: Perfect-Bound

· Publisher: BlazeVOX [books] 

· ISBN: 978-1-60964-228-0



All Beautiful & Useless by C. Kubasta Book Preview

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Nine by Anne Tardos Now Available!

What glee in the Nine, this tour de force of genius trickster complexity, “all about equipping poetry.” And Anne Tardos does this accouterment-ing like a Buddhist deity with many arms and heads. “Rub together two neurons and you have a mind” and play with nines and you have a rich compendium of unsurpassed wild multi-lingual-mental invention and words stomping around as richly palpable (non gendered!) masters of the universe. I got so refreshed by the wit and tenderness I couldn’t stop.

—Anne Waldman

Anne Tardos, whose poetry & performances have enlightened us for several decades now, emerges in Nines as an innovator of new forms as a vehicle for work that incorporates, like all great poetry, the fullest range of thoughts & experiences & makes them stick in mind & memory. I am struck, as rarely happens, by this combination of form & content, each a powerful extension of the other.

—Jerome Rothenberg

Reading Anne Tardos's Nines feels like living in the middle of everything and anything that is, isn't, can't, can, ought to be, needs to be, happening in just this way, right now, in language, sometimes several languages, while accompanied by a dear and reliable friend (once in a while flailing around wildly, though in a controlled way - nine word lines, nine line poems, no matter how improbably) whose sensible voice soothes, jokes, seduces, pokes fun at itself, and now and then a line that astonishingly simply tells you the truth about your life, despite everything. A truly, literally, wonderful book. With an astute and illuminating introduction by Rachel Blau DuPlessis.

—Norman Fischer

Although in compact nine-word/nine-line containers, the poems in Nines are capacious. Formally inventive, philosophical, speech-like, sometimes syntactically tousled, they are as amusing as they are intensely serious. Autobiography, community, love, mortality, dark humor, and whimsy all make appearances in these meticulously timed gems. Genius9.

—Nada Gordon

Anne Tardos, American, is the author of nine books of poetry, and editor of three collections of poetry by Jackson Mac Low. Her work has been published in dozens of anthologies and journals around the world.

Tardos pioneered a unique multilingual writing style, often complementing her texts with video stills, photographs, and collages. Her writing is renowned for its fluid use of multiple languages and its innovative forms. She has worked in numerous media, creating performance pieces, radio plays, videos, and musical compositions.

Around 1980, she began performing her own works, and also creating new works with Mac Low. Her multilingual and multimedia works have been presented at the Museum of Modern Art, New York; the West German Radio, WDR; the XLIV Venice Biennale; and in many international sound poetry festivals, including Festival La Batie, Geneva; text-ljud Festival, Stockholm; Scene Wien, Vienna; and Zwischentoene, Cologne.

Since moving to New York in 1966, she maintained lifelong friendships with artists Richard Lindner, Saul Steinberg, Sam Francis, Larry Rivers, Vito Acconci, Ay-O, John Cage, Judith Malina, Simone Forti, Nam June Paik, Charlotte Moorman, George Maciunas; art dealer Felix Landau, architects Vally and Serge Sabarsky; poets Jackson Mac Low, Jerome Rothenberg, Lyn Hejinian, Anne Waldman, Robert Creeley, and other influential figures of the New York avant-garde.

A Fellow in Poetry from the New York Foundation for the Arts, Tardos lives in New York City with her husband, the composer Michael Byron.

Book Information:

· Paperback: 148 pages

· Binding: Perfect-Bound

· Publisher: BlazeVOX [books] 

· ISBN: 978-1-60964-226-6



NINE 1-126 by Anne Tardos Book Preview

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Failure Lyric by Kristina Marie Darling reviewed


Kristina Marie Darling's Failure Lyric 

Kristina Marie Darling released her book Failure Lyric with BlazeVox Books earlier this year. Like Darling’s previous texts, Failure Lyric explores many relevant and emotionally evocative experiences. The most prevalent themes include the futility of romance, marriage and its many betrayals. Recurring images of the winter season, shattered glass, flowers and dead girls are expertly woven throughout the book, providing a cohesive narrative that exists seamlessly alongside a lyrical succession of images. We witness what it is to be a woman covered by the shadow of a man and a subversion of a misogynistic society while being trapped inside of it. Necessarily, there also exists a subdued feminist sensibility which aims to un-stifle the book’s narrator as she responds to her environment. This narrator, for obvious reasons is one which the majority of women can relate to.

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