I’ve joined the Constant Critic team!

Though I’m a scholar, I’ve pretty much steered clear of writing poetry reviews in the past. I think it’s because I had some half-baked/foggy notion that I should channel my creative efforts into my poetry and my scholastic efforts into my studies. If you’re familiar with my work and poetic interests, though, you can see how this divide quickly disintegrated. Living is breathing is moving is all.

This is to say that I’ve joined Constant Critic, a Fence publication, as one of their circle of reviewers. I’ll be posting poetry reviews on a regular basis over at their site and through their email lists. For those of you who want to subscribe–it’s free! I am joining a pretty impressive group — Karla Kelsey, Vanessa Place, Jordan Davis, and Raymond McDaniel. Former CCers include Joyelle Mcsweeney, Christina Mengert, K. Silem Mohammad, and Christine Hume.

Keep your eyes pealed for an update in a few weeks when the review comes out!

Also, if you’d like your book possibly reviewed or want to suggest some titles for consideration, shoot me an email. You can send it via editor@corollarypress.org.

May-lee wrote a review of the reading and I had a crazy dream

Back from San Francisco–wanted to post a link to a wonderfully generous and thoughtful review May-lee Chai wrote of the event at Small Press Traffic.

Also, I’ve been having some incredibly vivid dreams. I thought I’d write the most recent (what I can remember of it, at any rate) down. It’s definitely an anxiety dream.

I’m driving in a borrowed/stolen mini-van. It’s incredibly rainy, the sky is a dull gray, everything is gray and brown. The road I am driving on is as steep as a ski-slope. Cars zoom past and towards me from the other lanes. I am trying very hard to maintain control of the vehicle. There’s a slight taste of sharp panic in the back of my throat, in my fingertips. My fingertips can almost taste; they have a particular acuity, an electricity about them.

The steering wheel is frustratingly small. In fact, it is something like a game-controller, a small track-wheel on a flat pad affixed to the dashboard. It takes all my focus/energy to make sure I am turning with the steep curves of the road. The trackpad is lazy. It refuses to turn with the necessary fluency I require. I drive over a small ramp separating my lane from the oncoming traffic.

The road falls away beneath me. It’s no longer a road, anyway, but a stream of rain and mud. I feel the car leap into the air. Everything freezes in time. I am suspended like this–eternally falling, dashing, just losing ground–until I wake up.

In another recent dream, I attempted to strangle something called a “blue tongued skink.” The one in my dream looked nothing like the creature in actuality. My dream skink (!) was half alligator, half very smooth lizard. As smooth as a newt. And it was literally in half–the right side was scaly alligator, the left side was smooth newt. And it was about 4 feet long. And had a neon green/blue belly.

What monsters have you tried to murder in your dreams?

I’m reading at Small Press Traffic

Wow! I’m in San Francisco, and I just wanted to give people a heads up that I’ll be reading at Small Press Traffic tonight (February 11th) at 7:30 pm with Maxi Kim and Jackqueline Frost.

I’ll be projecting some images and possibly playing a short video on repeat of some ambient sharks that I made a few years back.

The wonderful folks at Atticus Finch press have made a broadside to support the event! I can’t wait to see it. Apparently Andrew Rippeon has done something quite amazing with the text. He’s brilliant. Michael Cross’s write up for the event gives details on the broadsides.

The details:
Timken Hall,CCA SF
1111 8th Street
event begins at 7:30pm
entrance is $8-15/members FREE


North of Invention Conference at the Kelly Writers House

Hello! It’s 2011, and it’s phenomenal.

If you’re in Philadelphia this week, you MUST go check out the North of Invention Conference, hosted by the Kelly Writers House and organized by Sarah Dowling. It’s going to be fantastic–a celebration of Canadian experimental writing. Wow! Some incredible  writers will be participating, such as Lisa Robertson, Nicole Brossard, Norbese Philip, etc. I get to introduce Christian Bok, whose work always blows my mind!

It’s going to be a packed weekend (starting on Thursday) that spans two cities–starting in Philadelphia and ending in New York. The itinerary is below!

Thursday, January 20: Kelly Writers House, Philadelphia

Friday, January 21: Kelly Writers House, Philadelphia

Saturday, January 22: Poets House, New York City


  • 2:00PM Welcome with Charles Bernstein & Sarah Dowling
  • 2:30PM A Conversation with M. NourbeSe Philip & Fred Wah
  • 4:00PM A Conversation with Stephen Collis & Christian Bök
  • 5:30PM A Poetry Reading with Stephen Collis, Sarah Dowling, M. NourbeSe Philip, a.rawlings & Fred Wah

Sunday, January 23: Poets House, New York City


  • 1:00PM A Conversation with Jeff Derksen & Lisa Robertson
  • 2:30PM A Conversation with a.rawlings & Jordan Scott
  • 4:00PM A Poetry Reading with Jeff Derksen, Christian Bök, Lisa Robertson & Jordan Scott

I’m in NYC this weekend for 2 events!


This week I’ll be speaking/reading with two astounding writers, Barbara Jane Reyes and Craig Santos Perez! If you’re around Saturday afternoon or Monday evening, please come out and join us. I’m a big believer and fan of Craig, having published his chapbook preterrain (which is all sold out!) last year, and am excited to finally meet and speak with him in person. I also own and love Barbara’s book Poeta in San Francisco. Both she and Craig are based on the West Coast, so this is a big treat to have them visiting out East.

SATURDAY November 13, 2PM
POETS HOUSE, 10 River Terrace

(Re)writing Culture with Sueyeun Juliette Lee, Craig Santos Perez & Barbara Jane Reyes

In this panel, three young poet-scholars investigate the intersection of research and poetic practice, including Perez’s interest in ethnography and poetry, Reyes’s practice of rewriting/retelling Filipino mythology and Lee’s exploration of geography, psychology and the textuality of nations (focusing specifically on the United States and North and South Korea).

$10, $7 for students and seniors, free to Poets House Members


MONDAY November 15, 7PM
Asian American Writers Workshop (AAWW), 110-112 W. 27th Street Suite 600

A reading of new work by poets Sueyeun Juliette Lee, Craig Santos Perez & Barbara Jane Reyes.

Holy Crap, the most thoughtful response to my work. EVER.

Thomas Fink has published a review of Underground National on Verse Mag’s blog. This review is hands down the most thorough, thoughtful, and detailed consideration of my work to date. This is not to denigrate the amazingly insightful and thoughtful reviews my work has received before, but Mr. Fink takes it to a whole ‘nother level. For real. He leaves no fragment unturned!

If you are at all interested in anything I do, you should definitely go read it.

Steven Karl reviews Underground National for Sink Review

Steven Karl has, unbeknownst to me!, written quite a review of Underground National over at Sink Review. I appreciate how his sensitive readings connect the book to other texts and lives. Thank you, Steven, for the critical attention!


And for those of you who haven’t checked out his chapbook, you should check out (Ir)Rational Animals (Flying Guillotine Press), a delirious exploration of human (s/t)exuality.

Mark Your Calendars in Austin and Philadelphia

APRIL. We tilt a bit closer to the sun, and what blossoms from the earth…I’m excited about several opportunities to read over the next few weeks. Maybe I’ll get to see you at some of them?

Firstly, the NEW issue of Critiphoria is out! Definitely one of the smartest collections I’ve ever had the privilege of appearing in. Please go “click” and take a peek.

I’ll be in Austin, Texas for the Association for Asian American Studies (AAAS) conference from April 8-11th. The conference is being held at the Omni Austin Hotel downtown. If you want to hear me nerd out, I’ll be presenting a paper on Mei Mei Berssenbrugge’s poetry on Thursday at 4:30pm. Timothy Yu, who wrote the excellent Race and the Avant Garde, will be presenting on John Yau’s Berlin poems, and Catherine Fung (who was just hired to teach up in Massachusetts) will discuss Gran Turino. Stephen Hong Sohn from Stanford will be chairing.

I’ll be reading poems for the Asian American Writers Workshop (AAWW) Reading on Friday, April 9th at 7pm.

On Saturday, April 10th, I’ll be reading with Ken Chen, the executive director of the AAWW at Hoa Nguyen’s home in Austin. I’ll have further details on that soon.

If you’re in Philadelphia, there’s a HUGE Heretical Texts event on Saturday, April 10th in Center City Philadelphia. All five poets will be (re)present(ed), and it is probably the only time this will happen for this particular volume of the Heretical Texts Series. Though I can’t physically be present because I’ll be in Austin, Carolina Maugeri will read a few of my poems on my behalf, and I will be there in spirit. Below is the announcement for the Philadelphia Heretical Texts reading.

On MONDAY April 12th, I’ll be giving a presentation discussing the use of film and theory in my poetry at the University of the Arts. The talk is from 1-2:30 in the CBS Auditorium, located in Hamilton Hall (corner of Broad and Pine Street). This talk is intended for an undergradate audience. You’ll need a picture ID if you plan on attending. I hope you do!

On FRIDAY April 16th, I’ll be reading in Philadelphia for the Moles Not Molar reading series. The event starts at 7:30 at the Wooden Shoe Bookstore (704 South Street (at South and 7th St). I’ll be reading with Matvei Yankelevich of Ugly Duckling Presse (they produce the most stunning books), with music by Tristan Dahn & Tim Leonido.


HERETICAL TEXT Philly event, DON’T MISS IT!  (If you miss it don’t come crying to me!)
April 10th
at 8pm
Corner of Walnut and Broad
in the Connelly Auditorium, 7th floor

(ENTER on Broad Street through the door between Rite Aide and the Italian restaurant, you will need to show I.D. at the desk to enter, EVENT IS FREE)

Kate Schapira (author of TOWN), Allison Cobb (author of Green-Wood), Sueyeun Juliette Lee (author of Underground National), Simone White (author of House Envy of All the World), and CAConrad & Frank Sherlock (co-authors of The City Real & Imagined)

HERETICAL TEXT Books are published by Factory School, and this Philly event is the only event in the continental US and the entire world where all the authors will be reading together!  DON’T MISS IT!
see:  http://www.factoryschool.org/ht/index.html for details on books.

Kate Schapira’s book:  http://www.factoryschool.com/pubs/heretical/vol5/schapira/index.html

Allison Cobb’s book:  http://www.factoryschool.com/pubs/heretical/vol5/cobb/index.html

Sueyeun Juliette Lee’s book:  http://www.factoryschool.com/pubs/heretical/vol5/lee/index.html

Simone White’s book:  http://www.factoryschool.com/pubs/heretical/vol5/white/index.html

CAConrad & Frank Sherlock’s book:  http://cityrealandimagined.blogspot.com

Release Reading in Philadelphia

Reception and Poetry Reading
Celebrating a Book Release and New Exhibit Opening

Friday March 5th, 2010
5:30-7:30 gallery opening and reception
7:30 PM-8:30 poetry reading
Asian Arts Initiative
1219 Vine Street, Philadelphia

There’s so much to celebrate!

I am incredibly excited about the release of Underground National (Factory School), which I’ve been working on for about three years. One of my favorite poets, Linh Dinh (also a Factory School poet), has kindly agreed to celebrate with me and share from his poetry and fiction.

The Asian Arts Initiative, which has been a generous friend and ally, will be hosting the event. The reception also celebrates their newest exhibit, CARRYING ACROSS. Curated by local artist Yvonne Lung, CARRYING ACROSS is a multi-media group exhibition that explores the nature, processes, and products of interpretation and translation. The findings range from morbidly beautiful to elegantly understated, hysterical to heartfelt.


Linh Dinh is the author of a novel, two collections of stories, and five books of poems. His work has been anthologized in Best American Poetry 2000, 2004, 2007 and Great American Prose Poems from Poe to the Present, among many other places. He is also the editor and translator of Vietnamese poetry. His collection of stories Blood and Soap was chosen by the Village Voice as one of the best books of 2004.

CARRYING ACROSS features artwork by Sama Alshaibi, Midori Harima, Tomiko Jones, Jong Kyu Kim, Sarah Koljonen, Larry Lee, Yvonne Lung, Shanjana Mahmud, Rana Sindhikara and I Gusti Putu Hardana Putra, and James Sham.

Underground National is available!

Factory School is pleased to announce the publication of Heretical Texts, Volume 5:

1. TOWN, by Kate Schapira (70 pages): How we live differently in the same world, who we mean when we say we, what we mean when we say here.

2. Green-Wood, by Allison Cobb (166 pages): Wanders Brooklyn’s famous nineteenth century Green-Wood Cemetery and discovers that its 500 acres–hills and ponds, trees and graves–mirror the American landscape: a place marked by greed, war, and death, but still pulsing with life.

3. Underground National, by Sueyeun Juliette Lee (108 pages): Go underground and enter into a subterranean consideration of how History collides with human memory to generate new, unseen currents for being.

4. House Envy of All the World, by Simone White (78 pages): Family, death, power, Poetry and blackness—each is implicated in a general failure of perfection and subjected to furious lyric re-thinking.

5. The City Real & Imagined, by CAConrad & Frank Sherlock (100 pages): Visit landmarks that remain standing, revisit citizens that live on in memory, and participate in the future mappings of your city yet to be realized–the city real & imagined.

For complete details, visit: www.factoryschool.org/ht

All books $15 paperback, $30 hardcover — available now through Small Press Distribution (www.spdbooks.org).

VOLUME DISCOUNT: Get a complete paperback set of HT Vol. 5 for $50 (33.3% discount). Order direct from Factory School using PayPal: www.factoryschool.com/pubs/order.html

To order by check, please write to bmarsh at factoryschool.org.