Zoom Blog

Holy Cats

Hurray and congrats to Susan Lewis​, her book Heisenberg’s Salon was just reviewed at Hyperallergic​!!!

 

Expect Catastrophe in Poems Built from Tension

In Heisenberg’s Salon, Susan Lewis reveals the irrational lurking within every gesture, symbol, structure, and sentiment.

However defined, prose poems usually confound me. They often come off as series of conventional paragraphs—what looks to me as bricks of text arranged in walls of white—no more poetic than any other prose. The prose poems that comprise Heisenberg’s Salon, Susan Lewis’s new collection, refreshingly generate cadence, rhythm, arresting rhymes. In short, they read like true poems because they are. But in the spirit of a volume that nervously veers and upends, let me depart my focus on form for an observation of atmosphere: These poems are tense!

They are also intense. Lewis refuses causal, casual, transparent notions of relations between concepts, people, or situations. She senses the irrational lurking within every gesture, symbol, structure, and sentiment. She does not exult in confusion and skepticism but dutifully communicates them— a radical and welcome honesty.

These poems visit seemingly commonplace scenarios, often with an unnamed “she” and “he” sharing confidences or company, which leads to some unexpected catastrophe. Or rather, unexpected if one is not prepared to share Lewis’s frightening logic that catastrophe is one of more usual developments we can come to expect.

Read the whole review here

Read more »

UNRULY by Elysia Lucinda Smith Now Available!

  

UNRULY is a book of rude girl poems describing threesomes, freewheeling, Joan of Arc, naked mole rats, and other R rated things. It is also a book about overcoming an upbringing in the Bible Belt. All this converges in a spilling, like when you vomit into your purse in an Uber except in this book you're sober enough to be mad.

Also see in UNRULY: poems in conversation with original artwork by riot girls across the country.


Starting with its terrific title, UNRULY gives us fierce and funny images, invites the reader in for matter-of-fact lines like “maybe you’ve been taking it/up the ass this whole time,” “and/then we high-fived or made out;/I don’t remember,” making you part of a conversation you are thrilled to overhear, about “how being a woman/means sometimes being pressed//into corners or blindness/or laughter.” There’s a lot of laughter. And we need it. These poems remind us to “want as much/as possible,” “because I am again and again aroused/to be alive.”

—Jill McDonough


“Elysia Smith sits her younger self beneath a ghost light and pulls the most arcane questions out from her chest. She looks back on the origins of her own sexual identity, surfacing the candid ugliness that flickers in all instances of coming of age and sex itself. Gritty detail and exquisite retelling crash together to disrupt the orderliness of simplified femininity that comes from a small-town upbringing.”

—Laura Knicklebine of Maudlin House


Unruly is not only one of the liveliest and most inviting titles I know for a collection of poems, it’s also one of the most accurate. Elysia Smith’s poems are utterly uninhibited, whatever their subject—Joan of Arc, Calamity Jane, and especially sex. But you’d be dead wrong to miss the underlying artistry. These unruly poems are completely finished down to their consistently unforgettable—hilarious, beautiful, scary—last lines. To quote Smith herself, this book is “the real, hairy thing”!

—Lloyd Schwartz

 

Elysia Lucinda Smith has published a few odd chapbooks, out of print but free to you if you want one of the copies in her closet. The rest of her work can be found online at ElysiaLucinda.com. In her free time she is a mean waitress.


Book Information:

· Paperback: 100 pages

· Binding: Perfect-Bound

· Publisher: BlazeVOX [books] 

· ISBN: 978-1-60964-276-1

$16

 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Unruly by Elysia Lucinda Smith Book Preview 

Read more »

A Lyrebird, Selected Poems of Michael Farrell by Michael Farrell; Editor Jared Schickling Now Available!

Revelation and habit conspire in this selection of Michael Farrell’s poetry, whose shambling virtuosity brings to mind the lost art of scat singing. From his earliest poems, Farrell’s skittish lines echo the studied laissez-faire of the New York School, but they also make it new, with a startling range of tone and diction broadcast—and exquisitely garbled—from somewhere down under. Yet perhaps the most astonishing quality of Farrell’s poetry is the way it summons that rarest of affinities—a correspondence with the movement of dance. For reading Farrell’s poems can feel like one is shadowing a step, a combination, by Gene Kelly—or Savion Glover, looping and breaking across a field of trifles and sorrows.

—Daniel Tiffany


Enter A Lyrebird and you open onto a polyphony of slang and nuance. Expect a humorous disorientation and deep travel through undersides of all that can be said and borrowed. Just in time, since mono-culture cannot know itself, Michael Farrell’s deft bravery transmutes English and gives us journeys out.

—Sarah Riggs

 
 
 
 

Michael Farrell grew up in Bombala, New South Wales. He lives in Melbourne. He has edited features for US journals Slope, GutCult and ecopoetics. He visited the US in 2004, 2015 and 2016, and has performed in Buffalo, Seattle, Berkeley, and San Francisco. Books unrepresented in this selection are BREAK ME OUCH (a comics poetry book, 3 Deep), and Long Dull Poem (SOd). His scholarly book, revised from his PhD, is Writing Australian Unsettlement: Modes of Poetic Invention 1796-1945 (Palgrave Macmillan). Michael also edited, with Jill Jones, Out of the Box: Contemporary Australian Gay and Lesbian Poets (Puncher and Wattmann, 2009), and edits the magazine Flash Cove (flashcovemag@gmail.com), with designer Wendy Cooper. He writes songs with Jimmy Hawk, and co-wrote the Dick Diver single “Waste the Alphabet.”

His poems have been included in the Turnrow Anthology of Australian Poetry (Turnrow) and Active Aesthetics: Contemporary Australian Poetry (Tuumba/Giramondo), as well as the following North American journals, some now defunct: Boston Review; Denver Quarterly; Verse; Pool; Lana Turner; can we have our ball back; Moria; Poetry; Shampoo; smalltown; Coconut; ex-ex-lit; Mirage#4/Period(ical); Yellow Field; blue and yellow dog; La Petite Zine; eccolinguistics; LIT; The Literary Review; Quarterly West; Slope; Tooth; Volt; Aught; Boog City; Dispatch Detroit; ducky; Fence; GutCult; Poethia; petticoat relaxer; sendecki.com; sidereality and others; thanks to their editors.


*

Jared Schickling is the author of several BlazeVOX books, including the trilogy Two Books on the Gas: Above the Shale and Achieved by Kissing + ATBOALGFPOPASASBIFL: Irritations, Excrement and Wipes + The Pink (2015-13) and Province of Numb Errs (2016), as well as The Paranoid Reader: Essays, 2006-2012 (Furniture Press, 2014) and the chapbook Prospectus for a Stage (LRL Textile Series, 2013). He lives in Western New York and edits Delete Press and The Mute Canary, publishers of poetry.

Book Information:

· Paperback: 162 pages

· Binding: Perfect-Bound

· Publisher: BlazeVOX [books] 

· ISBN: 978-1-60964-280-8

$18

 
 
 

A Lyrebird- Selected Poems of Michael Farrell Book Preview

Read more »

The MERCURY POEM by Jared Schickling Now Available!

 THE MERCURY POEM sifts through the aftermath of nuclear meltdown and lets the senses piece us together. A puzzle: in this our time of ever-expanding exclusion zones, how to take cover / take care inside foregone conclusion? What is not forgone? What is poetry inside such disaster? Ear to the ground, eye on the facts, and with heart and subtle humor, Jared Schickling offers a volatile music where “flammable animals cavort / bioplastic / in the bioplast” and the fish choir takes over. Here is poetry that pulses, in search of. Read up.

—Ryan Eckes


Writing from the liver of what he’d call a National Sacrifice Zone, Schickling’s oozy syntax mixes tire fires and shrimp songs, transboundary waste dumping and hungry babies. And against easy, blissed-out landscape poetry, he gives us ecologies as they are: wondrous saturations of life and matter disturbed by floods of mutagenic pollutants in poems like damaged double-helixes that make a jagged sense read forward or backward. This collection is, by turns, playful and ethically rigorous, performing playful flips in language but also never forgetting we live in a world that will remain marked for millennia by acts of corporate and governmental malfeasance. The poems remind us that environmental catastrophe and quotidian life touch each other in intimate, ongoing ways.

—Joe Hall


With THE MERCURY POEM, Jared Schickling brings us an oddly reversible apocalypse—the story of individuals grappling with their own bleak place in history. “A tsunami ruining the beach / during an election season,” “the exclusion zone is breeding,” and as an elegy to television, the poet finds normalcy in the unlivable.

—Jonathan Penton

Jared Schickling is the author of several BlazeVOX books, including the trilogy The Pink + ATBOALGFPOPASASBIFL: Irritations, Excrement and Wipes + Two Books on the Gas: Above the Shale and Achieved by Kissing (2013-15) and Province of Numb Errs (2016), as well as The Paranoid Reader: Essays, 2006-2012 (Furniture Press, 2014); the chapbooks Prospectus for a Stage (LRL Textile Series, 2013) and A Packet of Food (Omnia Vanitas Review, 2013); two Trump Locofo chaps, Donald Trump and the Pocket Oracle and Donald Trump in North Korea (Moria, 2017); and he edited A Lyrebird: Selected Poems of Michael Farrell (BlazeVOX, 2017). He lives in Western New York and edits Delete Press and The Mute Canary, publishers of poetry.

Book Information:

· Paperback: 72 pages

· Binding: Perfect-Bound

· Publisher: BlazeVOX [books] 

· ISBN: 978-1-60964-300-3

$16

 
 
 
 
 

The MERCURY POEM by Jared Schickling Book Preview 

Read more »
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 ... »

Extra Pages

Photos on flickr