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Photo Credit: Andrew Kenower
"Cataclysm's Open Road and Burnt Rubber: A Conversation Between Jamie Townsend and Ted Rees" is now up on Entropy! Here's an excerpt:
One of my aims in the book is to interrogate this history of devastation and its reasoning, while also extending that interrogation into more recent gentrification and development efforts, thus connecting finance vampyrics over time.
The voices in the poems about Oakland, then, are very much attempting to be in concert with the environment, giving aural space to the interstices, the histories, and the present interpretations of the urban scape. There are a lot of rhythms and tones that are somewhat easier to suss out— hyphy music and older rhythm and blues tracks make a number of appearances— and some that are more obscure, but what connects them is that they are situated in a location that is roughly fifteen blocks by twenty-five blocks.
The other poems in the book are more geographically dispersed, but I think share something of the wailing of disaster, of “cataclysm’s open road and burnt rubber/ one long drift across the continent.” That this wailing never ceases no matter one’s location needs to be recognized and reckoned with, particularly by those who benefit from (and often cause) its reverberations across time and space.
You can read the whole interview here
And make sure to get your copy of In Brazen Fontanelle Aflame by Ted Rees, whose writing has been described by Cassandra Troyan as "brilliant effusive baroque, styled by the trash of capitalist excess".
Here's an excerpt:
To be born again is to be ecstatic, to stand beside oneself in fear, rage, or grief (Judith Butler, Precarious Lives). It is simultaneously in the body and out of body. It’s fucking God, then forming the words with the goo from that encounter. Born Again is my bildungsroman. All these themes, the etymological link of rape and rapture with the disembodying effect of consumerism, trauma, heteronormative white patriarchy, could not be separated. Once I got started, I didn’t want to stop.
You can read the whole interview here.
Also, make sure to check out Ivy Johnson's artist book, As They Fall, which just happens to be the first book published by Timeless, the one that started it all.
Forthcoming Timeless author Lauren Levin and Bay Area poet Sara Larsen interview each other on their new books: The Braid and Merry Hell. Here's an excerpt:
Sara Larsen: So, my dear friend, my heart was just bursting with your book! I was really struck by the form of The Braid and especially loved that the first line of the book starts in media res: “And then Lindsey and I talk about vulnerability and what it means”… as if we are already there with you and Lindsey.
Can you say more about the title and how it might relate to your process in writing the book? Also, did you conceive of it as a book ahead of time, or did you just begin?
Lauren Levin: The title feels related to the way I think: very associative. And the process of the book was bringing strands of different content (maternal, political) together. Which is a kind of braiding. And also trying to pull things apart. For instance, pulling apart the anxieties of parenting and thinking about them as related to political or collective anxiety. So it felt like an in-and-out motion, a kind of weave.
SL: I feel like the first line interpolates the reader right away into that idea of putting things together and pulling them apart…which is something so many of us already feel is happening all the time in our lives.
LL: Thank you. That’s good to hear. The in medias res..I don’t know that I had a conscious reason for beginning there, except that it propelled me forward. But I was struggling with the artifice of art: that however visceral the writing, one is making something and thus shaping, presenting the experience. That question combined with the feeling of desperation I had at the time. I wanted to imagine I was doing more than I could really do. I wanted to pull people in. Though I’m also skeptical about pulling people in! And about what art can do.
Caleb Beckwith interviews Tatiana Luboviski-Acosta on their new book The Easy Body. Here's an excerpt:
Caleb Beckwith: I’ve always been curious about what new Timeless authors make of their publisher’s promise to publish books that are “spells for unravelling capitalism.” I read The Easy Body (forthcoming this Spring) as a text with resistance at its core. And resistant to specific political forces: capitalism and patriarchy are both named explicitly, and, as usual, white supremacy is never far from two closest companions. Yet The Easy Body is not the jargon-filled peon to solidary that some have come to expect of political writing, especially coming out of the Bay Area.
I wonder: do you consider The Easy Body a book of “political poetry?” Is that term too crowded with other dissimilar works? And regardless, how do you see The Easy Body functioning in context with other political writings: on Timeless, in the Bay Area, and abroad?
Tatiana Luboviski-Acosta: The Easy Body is absolutely a political poem. I began writing it the night I went to see Olive Blackburn read from her Timeless tract Communism is up there and we are down here but it is happening now at Amy Berkowitz’s reading series in May of 2014. I was pregnant and confused and angry, but hearing Olive read “the inevitable moment has come: pick sides or perish” set something alight within me.
Janice Lobo Sapigao discusses obsession, her favorite chapbooks & her 2017 TIL book, like a solid to a shadow in a new interview up on Speaking of Marvels.
Read the full interview here.
Here's an excerpt from the interview:
What obsessions led you to write your book?
I like the word ‘obsessions.’ To me, this means focus, or adjusting your lens to center on one thing or a few somethings that are related somehow. And then you’re searching, somehowsomehowsomehow and it becomes a thing. That somehow is my father. The thing it became during obsessing is a book. The writing was the search beyond the act of seeing and privilege/sense of sight.