Word Up celebrates recent books by MONICA ONG (Silent Anatomies), BETHANY CARLSON (Diadem Me), and W. TODD KANEKO (The Dead Wrestler Elegies) with an afternoon of poetry and images.
Monica Ong’s Silent Anatomies—selected by poet Joy Harjo as winner of the Kore Press First Book Award—is a collection of poems that traverse the body’s terrain, examining the phenomena of cultural silences. In her exciting debut, Monica Ong takes us to lyrical haunts on the boundaries of text and image, medicine and memory, immersing us deep in the waters of fluid identity.
Bethany Carlson’s Diadem Me shimmers with accumulations of feeling and experience. These poems map a surface at once interior and exterior, and, as they do, they offer their readers new ways of moving through a world that is at once arbitrary and ordered. In mourning, jubilation, and wonderment, Carlson breaks the hymn in a Dickinsonian way, offering us something like transcendence—except her poems never forget their earthly, bodily roots.
W. Todd Kaneko is the author of The Dead Wrestler Elegies. He lives in Grand Rapids, Michigan, where he is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Writing at Grand Valley State University.