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Interview on the Black Ocean Blog

Dana Guth did an interview w/me about the idea in and process behind my new book Someone’s Utopia, which also got its first review in Fanzine by Joseph Houlihan.

But, also, let’s face it, there are more important things to read right now in order to digest what the 2018 elections meant and didn’t mean and whether they were just a speed bump for creeping fascism or whether one can hope against hope this is turning point and then entertain the thought that it might be a turn towards realizing a visionary leftist politics and what to do either way (something). So here’s some more important things to read than my interview:

“Trump Was Repudiated” by Keeanga-Yamahtta Taylor.

“Hidden in Plain Sight: A Note on Legitimation Crises and the Racial Order” by Michael C. Dawson.

& look at what these amazing people did.

And a friend sent me this waiting at a bus station in Richmond.

And just read whatever helps yr values flower into rad leftist action or replenishes you for action.

Ok now here’s the interview.

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update: production in the middle of production soaked by production

This blog post’s title is a paraphrase of Xie Xiangnan poem in Iron Moon. I was going to do a Coward on this book and a number of other scare quotes working class scare quotes collections but started working 6 days a week.

Rob McLellan invited me to write (& I overwrote it) about my (small press) writing day. It’s an international mix of writers, often crossing and recrossing the Canadian-American border: Buck Downs (still getting postcards), Eileen Tabios, Mugabi Byenkya (first line: “Every day I wake up wishing I was dead” – read this). In other Rob McLennan news, recently read and am reading news chaps by good rad humans/Buffalo survivors Allison Cardon and Travis Sharpe.



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Writers Buffet poster sugar suger

Hey, I’m doing some readings this week.

Thursday, June 21 @ 7 | Berl’s Brooklyn Poetry Shop | w/Jill Magi & Marty Cain. Driving w/Marty. Looking forward to talking w/Jill. Labor is an important book to me. FB Stuff.

Info for the Detroit reading above. It’s a rad format. And I got to bring potluck dishes too — “and to eat our bread together by the sweat of our brows” — cool. BUT WHAT WILL I COOK? & I’ll be driving through Canada, so I can’t bring food from the States, can I? Please advise. FB Stuff.

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The Coward 2

Rosa Alcalá’s MyOTHER TONGUE, Jill Magi’s LaborPizza Pi Press’ Recipes for Revolution, more.

I’ve been meaning to write about my state of mind when it comes to these reading journals.

I lost my tongue. I don’t know when. Perhaps it was three years ago. I didn’t know how to talk about poetry anymore, so I stopped. And poetry was just a bird fluttering around in my glued mouth. It depressed me. I was depressed. And mostly I stopped corresponding with most people. Secretly I hoped that the silence would lead to clarity but the silence just led to silence. So these journals are not about me showing off my fluency. They’re more self therapy. They are embarrassing. Full of ums, ahs, and incomplete thoughts. You can hear me swallow and sweat. So if I let the embarrassing fly, I’m hoping wholer words and thoughts will follow. But, also, this is just one part of my life. I do stuff like eat good food and take hikes and love Cheryl. Don’t worry! Just trying to be accurate.


One thing I didn’t add to this journal was immigration court records I’ve been reading on account of some work I’m doing. Maybe next time. Long story short: the monolingualism of the courts is killing people. They essentially say to detainees filing for asylum who are often suffering PTSD and usually have few resources and no lawyers, “Please write a long report on all your trauma in English. Gather corroborating accounts in English. If you can’t write in English, get a translator. If the accounts aren’t in English or translated by a certified translator, we will throw them out.” It’s a farce.

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The Coward 1

This is a reading journal, meant to be semi-obscure, between public and private. For those who care. Thought at the beginning, in process. Posted well after recording.

This time Ghayath Almadhoun’s Adrenaline, a poem from Tim Liu’s selected, Petr Bezruč, some scholarship on the commons, Tongo Eisen-Martin’s Heaven Is All GoodbyesEnemy of the Sun, some more.

Next: Rosa Alcalá’s MyOTHER TONGUE, Bernadette Mayer’s Midwinter’s Day, Jill Magi’s Labor, more.