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Current Obsessions

It's a gloomy mid-April Saturday in 2018 that refuses to be spring, & I'm obsessed with, in no particular order:

 

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Work in the World

I'm currently touring with my poetry board game, Dr. Carr's Word Forage

As I see it, Dr. Carr's Word Forage is a necessary intervention into the current cultural suspicion about poetry's relevance, and an antidote to that peculiar public school predilection for teaching poetry as something be consumed.

In his 1991 Atlantic article titled “Can Poetry Matter?,” Dana Gioia argues that “poetry teachers especially at the high school and undergraduate levels, should spend less time on analysis and more on performance. Poetry needs to be liberated from literary criticism. Poems should be memorized, recited, and performed. The sheer joy of the art must be emphasized.”

Dr. Carr’s Word Forage is a strategy for getting poetry out of the classroom, for restoring its vitality and unleashing its energy, for breaking poetry’s exhausted conventions and sharing poetry in a new way, that matters. The number of recent publications dedicated to asserting poetry’s relevance is proof that we need new strategies for releasing readers released into poetry—not as an escape from “the pressure of the real” but as a place where we can turn imagination into action and explore possibilities rather than positions.

Contact me to book Dr. Carr's Word Forage for your classroom, fundraiser, artwalk, corporate retreat etc: ifshedrawsadoor@gmail.com

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Work in Progress

After 8+ years in the making, my first collection of fiction, Name Your Bird Without A Gunis forthcoming from Spork Press next year & I couldn't be more delighted to add prose to my resume!

After 3+ years in the visionary stages, I'm finally translating The Emergency of Feeling Manual into an actual manuscript. In this hybrid creative nonfiction collection, I:

  • tell the kinds of stories we just don’t tell (like surviving suicide and forgiving yourself for infidelity),

  • explore the moral distinctions and ambiguities around issues (such as fertility and body image) that continue to be subject-defining choices for women

  • offer questions in lieu of answers

Why I Write

All of my projects are book-length experiments. I'm interested in what we gain in terms of reimagining the hierarchy between writer and reader when are compound the method of the lyric with the narrative structure of the book. What's at stake for me in this kind of writing is telling a story about how to live well within chaos and/or urgency [versus "progress"]. In all of my work, what attracts me to the long form is its flexibility and rigor: how it can accommodate all of the selves we inhabit any given moment, while at the same time throwing those selves—their agency, autonomy, reliability—into question. Why? Because I want all of the existential angst of sentience and selfhood concentrated in the act of reading. Because I want the act of reading to challenge what is real, and who gets to decide what ways of knowing about the world get to count, and what it means to hope, and whether we can in fact push language past the limits of our Cartesian worldview and how, in doing so, we might get past the false facts—the ones that get us through the day. Because I want to collage my own mythology: from the discarded Protestant faith and middle-class middle-American values of childhood, from the feminist and ecocritical theories of early adulthood, from mythology in the classical sense and from the lyric love triangle, in the Sapphic sense, as a space of transformation and relation, where the difference between what is and what could be, what humans make and what is human, becomes palpable.