Booksmith / Virtual Events
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Booksmith is pleased to host a virtual event with Omnidawn Publishing for their seasonal launch of new titles, for which each author will be reading from their work. Be the first to own these new treasures:
The Ghost Trio by Clyde Derrick (Winner of the Omnidawn Fabulist Fiction Chapbook / Novelette Contest, sslected by Molly Gloss
Chorus by Daniela Naomi Molnar (Winner of Omnidawn’s 1st /2nd Book Prize, selected by Kazim Ali)
Yours, Purple Gallinule by Ewa Chrusciel
100 Notes on Violence by Julie Carr
(no subject) by Peter Burghardt
Pink Waves by Sawako Nakayasu
t/here it is by TJ Anderson III
This event is free and all ages, but RSVP is required. Event link will be sent to everyone who registers.
About The Ghost Trio by Clyde Derrick
The great love of your life is dead, but that doesn’t stop him from communicating with you—or luring you to join him in the afterlife. To remain safe in this world, you accept the help of a professional medium who develops his own emotional agenda.
The Ghost Trio that emerges takes us to pre- and post-World War II Prague where a poignant and chilling love triangle finds its resolution. There we meet great Czech creators of the past including Leoš Janácek and Karel Capek. Inspired by the ghost stories of Henry James and Daphne du Maurier, Clyde Derrick introduces three characters whose passions defy time and the accepted boundaries between the dead and the living. The author, who has lived in and visited purportedly haunted sites in advance of writing this novella, contends that this story and its characters found him. Meanwhile, his portrayal of two Pragues—one poised to fall to Hitler’s army, the other muted by Communist oppression—offers us insights into the past and reminds us to stay vigilant against dangerous politics. The Ghost Trio is a spiritual excursion in which we ponder the limitations and hazards of romantic love as well as the possibility of other lives in other times.
The Ghost Trio is the winner of the 2020 Omnidawn Fabulist Fiction Chapbook / Novelette Contest, chosen by Molly Gloss.
Clyde Derrick’s first novel The Wash won the Sol Books Fiction Prize for publication, while his experimental story “Each One As She Must” placed third in UCLA’s “Considering Gertrude Stein” competition. His lauded short film Strider’s House has aired on PBS and his plays Angel’s Flight and Teshuvah have been produced on the Los Angeles stage by Write Act Repertory Company. Clyde earned his BA at Pomona College, where he won the Dole King Kinney Prize for writing, and an MFA in Cinema at USC. He lives in Claremont, California.
To have The Ghost Trio sent to your door, order here.
About Chorus by Daniela Naomi Molnar
At a time of simultaneous isolation and interconnection, this book is an inquiry into the edges of the self. Pushing back on capitalist messages of individuality, CHORUS instead seeks the multifaceted self that engages with the radical diversity that characterizes any healthy ecosystem or society. Moving between a remote canyon in New Mexico, the Pacific Northwest, New York City, the virtual world, the past, and the unstable future, the author asks, “Whose afterimage am I?”
The sprawling, celebratory, mourning chorus of this book is the sum of many voices; the words of other writers, poets, and artists are interwoven with the author’s words. This is a celebration of language’s capacity to supersede bodily limits, mortality, and existential loneliness. Daniela Naomi Molnar’s chorus encompasses violence, love, empathy, fear, a burning planet, a pandemic, heartbreak, desire, joy, and grief. Rather than seeking resolution, these poems look through the lens of a fragmented self, dwelling in plurality, discord, and harmony.
Chorus is the winner of Omnidawn’s 1st /2nd Book Prize, judged by Kazim Ali.
Daniela Naomi Molnar is an artist working with the mediums of language, image, and place. She is also a wilderness guide, educator, and eternal student. Her work melds poetry, painting, prose, and site-specific intervention. She founded the Art + Ecology program at the Pacific Northwest College of Art and is a backcountry instructor with Signal Fire. She can be found wandering public wildlands, in Portland, Oregon, or at www.danielamolnar.com / IG: @daniela_naomi_molnar
To have Chorus sent to your door, order here.
About Yours, Purple Gallinule by Ewa Chrusciel
Ewa Chrusciel’s fourth book in English, Yours, Purple Gallinule, playfully explores health and illness as they are culturally constructed. Using research into clinical understandings of mental afflictions and their treatments through history, Chrusciel maps various diagnostics onto an array of bird species. A lyrical satire, the book is a reflection on a society that tends to over-diagnose, misdiagnose, and over-medicate. These poems pose questions about what it means to be unique and to accept pain and suffering as a fact of life.
On the pages of Yours, Purple Gallinule, we encounter birds, a poet, and a psychiatrist. The psychiatrist undergoes a series of conversions as she realizes that the point is not to classify thoughtlessly, but to “make music instead”—to dwell in astonishment. Birds evade the anthropomorphizing intentions of the human protagonists as the psychiatrist and the poet eventually become one. The anthropomorphizing goes in reverse, and the human being becomes more avian. Like the dove in the biblical Noah’s ark story, the bird proclaims a new covenant, with a twig in its beak and a message: “We are all mad; some more than others, but no one is spared the affliction. And the madder we are, the more sacred.”
Ewa Chrusciel’s previous books in English are Of Annunciations (Omnidawn 2017), Contraband of Hoopoe (Omnidawn 2014), Strata (Emergency Press 2009, reprinted by Omnidawn in 2018). Her book Contraband of Hoopoe was translated into Italian by Anna Aresi and came out in Italy with Edizioni Ensemble in May 2019. Chrusciel also published three books in Polish: Furkot (2001), Sopiłki (2009), and Tobołek (2016). Her poems appeared in numerous journals and anthologies in USA, Italy, and Poland. She also translated into Polish: “White Fang” by Jack London, “The Shadow Line” by Joseph Conrad, and “More Stories from My Father’s Court” by Isaac Bashevis Singer, as well as the book of selected poems by Jorie Graham, and selected poems of Kazim Ali, Lyn Hejinian, Cole Swensen and other American poets into Polish. She is an Associate Prof. of Humanities at Colby-Sawyer College.
To have Yours, Purple Gallinule sent to your door, order here.
About 100 Notes on Violence by Julie Carr
Julie Carr obsessively researches instances of intimate terrorism, looking everywhere from Walt Whitman and Emily Dickinson to lists of phobias and weapon-store catalogs. She searches for what can be learned from the statistics, the statements by and about rapists and killers, the websites of hate groups, and the capacity for cruelty that lies within all of us. 100 Notes on Violence is a diary, a document, and a dream log of the violence that grips America and devastates so many. But Carr also offers a layered and lyric tribute to violence’s counterforces: love, commonality, and care. Her unflinching “notes” provoke our minds and burrow into our emotions, leading us to confront our fears and our own complicity.
Julie Carr’s most recent books are Real Life: An Installation, Objects from a Borrowed Confession and the essay collection, Someone Shot My Book. She lives in Denver where she helps to run Counterpath and teaches at the University of Colorado in Boulder.
To have 100 Notes on Violence sent to your door, order here.
About (no subject) by Peter Burghardt
The poems of (no subject) are an investigation of the personal and the everyday. This collection draws inspiration from the idea of the quickly written subjectless email, as the poet would clear small periods of time to write and record observations and thoughts, then send it to himself in untitled emails. The book takes the shape of an impressionistic twenty-first-century diary, reflecting on themes of anxiety about the future and the situation of the present. As these moments compound, the line between the present, past, and future is blurred in the conflation of self and memory. Driven by a speaker who is hermetically sealed in their private world, these ostensibly subjectless poems derive their meaning through the tension between narrative and emotional resonances. Through moment-to-moment reflections, (no subject) digs deep in search of the big little feelings transmitted by fatherhood, the fusion of time and space, loneliness, resilience, and wonder.
Peter Burghardt is a writer who spends his time in the Midwest and the SF Bay Area. He co-founded and edits speCt books with Gillian Olivia Blythe Hamel, Robert Andrew Perez, and Chris Philpot. His work has appeared in various magazines and journals online and in print. His chapbook, Cosmic American Music, is available from Old Gold Press.
To have (no subject) sent to your door, order here.
About Pink Waves by Sawako Nakayasu
Written in loose sonata form, Pink Waves is a poem of radiant elegy and quiet protest. Moving through the shifting surfaces of inarticulable loss, and along the edges of darkness and sadness, Pink Waves was completed in the presence of audience members over the course of a three-day durational performance. Sawako Nakayasu accrues lines written in conversation with Waveform by Amber DiPietro and Denise Leto, and micro-translations of syntax in the Black Dada Reader by Adam Pendleton, itself drawn from Ron Silliman’s Ketjak. Pink Waves holds an amalgamation of texts, constructing a shimmering haunting of tenderness, hunger, and detritus.
Sawako Nakayasu is an artist working with language, performance, and translation – separately and in various combinations. She has lived mostly in the US and Japan, briefly in France and China, and translates from Japanese. Her books include Some Girls Walk Into The Country They Are From (Wave Books), The Ants (Les Figues Press), Texture Notes (Letter Machine Editions), and the translation of The Collected Poems of Chika Sagawa (Canarium Books), as well as Mouth: Eats Color – Sagawa Chika Translations, Anti-translations, & Originals (Rogue Factorial, 2011), a multilingual work of both original and translated poetry. She is co-editor, with Eric Selland, of an anthology of 20th Century Japanese Poetry (forthcoming, New Directions). She teaches at Brown University. Website: http://www.sawakonakayasu.net/
To have Pink Waves sent to your door, order here.
About t/here it is by TJ Anderson III
The poems in t/here it is take multiple forms as each section reflects on variations of experience, engaging with the simultaneity of historic and present time while yearning for a future that is beyond what we can envision. In Section I, the poet grapples with ancestral legacy and connection to the natural world. Section II deals with the way one traverses the urban landscape and with various strategies of survival, and Section III recalls the observations and experiences of youth. Through nine linked poems, Section IV complicates the idea of witness under a capitalistic system bent on exploitation and devaluing the sacred human experience. Section V speaks to the lost opportunity of making profound human connections during the race to acquire more material goods. In Section VI, the poems take on the domestic and institutional places that govern our lives. A single poem forms Section VII, mapping the intersection between jazz and emotion. With Section VIII, Anderson pays homage to jazz greats and reflects on the ways that listening can carry one back to moments of growth and lamentation. The two poems that close out the book in Section IX bring the reader to a place of vulnerability, expressing the desire to be able to discern the multiple avenues of one’s journey with awareness.
T.J. Anderson III is a former Fulbright Scholar at Cairo University and the author of Devonte Travels the Sorry Route, Winner of the Omnidawn Open, Selected by Arthur Sze, At Last Round Up, River to Cross, and Notes to Make the Sound Come Right: Four Innovators of Jazz Poetry. In addition, Anderson has produced two poetry and music collaborations: The Mask (with William Bolcom) and Songs of Illumination (with T.J. Anderson Jr.), and the highly acclaimed spoken word CD, Blood Octave.
To have t/here it is sent to your door, order here.
This event is free and all ages, but RSVP is required.
Authors are pictured above as listed, clockwise from top left.