Woman Made Gallery Poetry, midwest (milwaukee) monster remix, Burden of Light: Poems on Illness & Loss & Near Kin: A Collection of Words & Art inspired by Octavia Estelle Butler

April 6, 2014

Dear lovelies,

I’m happier for the warmer weather! There’s a buzz of springtime activity in the air and lots happening:

1) Woman Made Gallery Poetry: Rosellen Brown, Barbara Barg, Ching-In Chen, Kristy Bowen

Sunday, April 6, 2014, 1:30-3:30pm

Woman Made Gallery – 685 N Milwaukee Ave, Chicago, IL 60642

curated by Nina Corwin

17th annual International Open exhibit spans both Women’s History month and Poetry Month. While most WMG readings are organized around the theme of the concurrent art exhibit, this reading is an open celebration of women writers.

Participating readers include:

Rosellen Brown: author of ten books, five of them novels, The Autobiography of My Mother, Tender Mercies – not the movie! – Civil Wars, Before and After – of which there was a movie –and Half a Heart. Her three books of poetry include Cora Fry’s Pillow Book, and she has published a miscellany of essays, poetry and stories, and a book of stories, Street Games. Her work has appeared frequently in Best American Short Stories and O. Henry Prize Stories and Pushcart Prizes. She teaches in the MFA in Writing program at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago.

Barbara Barg, an old white woman, cocktail waitress, typesetter, private investigator, document designer, house cleaner, help-desk specialist, software trainer, procrastinator, energy healer, drug addict, baby sitter, moving van driver, fiction writer, tour guide, singer, songwriter, neuro-tech enthusiast, drummer, personal organizer, pixie-dust sprinkler, dog walker, advice-giver, census taker, editor, political activist, web content writer, energy clearer, cigarette smoker, mentor, tuning forker, marketing assistant, meditation practitioner, encyclopedia salesperson, student of aquaponics, shoulder to cry on, qigong foot masseuse, film script writer, day dreamer, ice-cream truck driver, carnival worker, and poet. She currently teaches rhythm/tone/texture strategies for poets online for Chicago School of Poetics.

Writer and visual artist Kristy Bowen, author of several book, chapbook, and art zine projects, including the recent girl show (Black Lawrence Press, 2014) and the shared properties of water and stars (Noctuary Press, 2013). She lives in Chicago, where she runs dancing girl press & studio, which publishes a series of chapbooks devoted to women authors. Her fifth collection, major characters in minor films, is forthcoming next year from Sundress Publications.

and Ching-In Chen, author of The Heart’s Traffic (Arktoi Books/Red Hen Press) and co-editor of The Revolution Starts at Home: Confronting Intimate Violence Within Activist Communities (South End Press). They are a Kundiman, Lambda and Norman Mailer Poetry Fellow and a member of the Voices of Our Nations Arts Foundation and Macondo writing communities. A community organizer,they have worked in the Asian American communities of San Francisco, Oakland, Riverside and Boston. In Milwaukee, they are cream city review‘s editor-in-chief.


2) midwest (milwaukee) monster remix in Verse Wisconsin!

Thanks to Verse Wisconsin‘s editors Wendy Vardaman & Sarah Busse for giving me the opportunity to curate a section for the Midwest Remix issue! Check out the work of Carina Gia Farrero, Soham Patel, Chelsea Wait, Dawn Tefft, Nikki Wallschlaeger, Cassie Nicholson, Freesia McKee & Jessica Vega Gonzalez in “midwest (milwaukee) monster remix”! Lots of other great work curated by Lane Hall, Nick Demske, Margaret Rozga, Dasha Kelly, Chelsea Tadeyeske, Oscar Mireles & Kara Candito/Adam Fell!


3) “Exponential Mothers” in The Burden of Light: Poems on Illness and Loss

Thanks to Tanya Chernov for organizing the e-book anthology, The Burden of Light: Poems on Illness and Loss, with poems meant to provide companionship in difficult times.

Along with my poem, Exponential Mothers,” you can find 90 other poets including Jessica Jacobs, Michelle Brown, Peggy Shumaker, Susan Firer & many more, alongside audio, video, paintings, photo, digital art, links to books & litmags. You set your own price, and all proceeds go to cancer research.

4) “Parable of the Shiny City” in Near Kin: A Collection of Words & Arts inspired by Octavia Estelle Butler

Just received my contributor’s e-book copy of Near Kin: A Collection of Words & Art inspired by Octavia Estelle Butler, edited by Marie Lecrivain, from Sybaritic Press. Pleased that my poem, “Parable of the Shiny City,” has found a home alongside the work of Alexis Pauline Gumbs, Walidah Imarisha, Tara Betts, Danez Smith & many others!



AWP: where you’ll find Ching-In

February 25, 2014

Dear friendlies attending AWP &/or in Seattle,

Here’s where you can find me! During the daytime, I’ll be helping out at the AWP bookfair.

If you’re not planning on attending the conference, the bookfair is free to the public on Saturday. You can find me at the cream city review table (CC10); the VONA/Voices of Our Nations Arts Foundation table to promote the new VONA anthology, Dismantle; and the Conversant/Essay Press table (I’m going to be joining the Conversant as one of the new senior editors!)

I’ll also be participating in two free offsite readings – a Thursday night Poetic Justice reading at Left Bank Books and a Friday night Lambda Fellows reading, celebrating the release of The 25 for 25 anthology, Lambda’s 25th Anniversary e-book anthology (info below).

Hope to see you in Seattle!



Heading to AWP? Come visit cream city review at our table, CC10, at the bookfair (Thursday, Feb. 27 until Sat, March 1)

We’ll have our most current issues and we’re bringing back last year’s popular back issue bundles for sale. We’ll also have some free swag!

We’re offering three distinct bundles of back issues, each centered around a particular theme.


The QUEER bundle showcases work by queer writers in issues 28.1, 29.2 and 33.2, including Jennifer Perrine, Richard Blanco, Lydia Melvin (Metta Sama), Rane Arroyo, Ellen Bass, Elizabeth Bradfield, Qwo-Li Driskill, Rita Mae Reese and many others!

The TERRA bundle, inspired by native writers and writers from various geographies and diasporas, includes issues 27.1, 27.2, and 31.1 and writers such as Allison Hedge Coke, Jaswinder Bolina, Heid E. Erdrich, Allison Joseph, Dilruba Ahmed, Diane Glancy, Esther Lee, Joy Harjo, Mark Turcotte, Gordon Henry and many others!


Our RETRO bundle features back-in-the day issues 11.2, 19.2 and 20.1&2 (20th anniversary), celebrating Amiri Baraka, Stuart Dybek, Denise Levertov, Marilyn Hacker, Audre Lorde, Ursula K. Le Guin, Cris Mazza and others!


$10 for one, $15 for two, and $20 for three (feel free to mix-and-match!)

Want to have the bundles shipped?

$12 for one, $18 for two, and $25 for three


Stop by our table for a visit!

See you in Seattle!
Your friends at cream city review


AWP Offsite Event: Poetic Justice: An Evening of Radical Poetry

Thursday, February 27, 2014 9-11pm @ Left Bank Books Collective

92 Pike St, Seattle, Washington 98101

Hosted by Ching-In Chen and Victorio Reyes

Featured Readers:
Victorio Reyes, Ching-In Chen, Patricia Killealea, and Tara Betts.

In the words of the late, great June Jordan, “poetry is a political act”. In the spirit of June Jordan, Poetic Justice – an evening of radical poetry, aims to provide a space for the celebration of poetry as a vehicle for social change. History has seen a long and humbling list of poets that have used their writing as a means and conduit for changing minds, revealing truths, and healing wounds. Despite the deep and rich history of radical poetics, there is still a skepticism of such work in some literary circles. Adrienne Rich wrote: “I came out first as a political poet… under the taboo against so-called political poetry in the US”. As we continue the tradition of greats like Jordan and Rich, Poetic Justice, will be one small event to help build a forum for a bright future in radical poetry, one that is cognizant of its great tradition.

The organizers of the event ask that guests join us in making the event more accessible to those wishing to attend who have multiple chemical sensitivities by not carrying fragrances or scents on your clothes, hair, or skin.

For more information:





Bios of the featured readers:

Tara Betts is an author, a Ph.D. candidate at Binghamton University, and a Cave Canem fellow. Tara’s poetry and prose has appeared in various journals and anthologies. She has also contributed to interdisciplinary collaborations such as John Sims’ “Recoloration Proclamation” and “Rhythm of Structure” installations, filmmaker Nijla Mu’min, and Peggy Choy Dance Company’s “THE GREATEST: An Afro-Asian Tribute to Muhammad Ali” among others. Her work has a appeared in:Essence, the Steppenwolf Theater production “Words on Fire,” Obsidian III, Callaloo, Crab Orchard Review, PMS, Bellevue Literary Review, Meridians, Drum Voices Revue, WSQ, Columbia Poetry Review, Ninth Letter, Hanging Loose, and Drunken Boat. See more at:

Patricia Killelea is a mixed-heritage Chicana poet, musician, and scholar. She is the author of the poetry collection Other Suns, which is available from Swan Scythe Press (2011), and is currently a Ph.D Candidate in Native American Studies at the University of California at Davis. She holds a Master’s degree in Creative Writing and English, also from UC Davis. Originally from the Bay Area, CA, she has taught the Introduction to Native American Literature course at UC Davis since Fall 2009, and she also teaches Creative Writing at Solano College. A former artist-in-residence at the Santa Fe Art Institute, Patricia has recently completed her second manuscript, titled Counterglow, and is currently producing experimental video poems. Find out more about her work at www.patriciakillelea.com

Ching-In Chen is the author of The Heart’s Traffic (Arktoi/Red Hen Press, 2009) and a multi-genre, border-crossing writer. Child of Chinese immigrants, they are a Kundiman, Lambda and Norman Mailer Poetry Fellow and a member of the Macondo and Voices of Our Nations Arts Foundations writing communities. A community organizer, they have worked in the Asian American communities of San Francisco, Oakland, Riverside and Boston. Chen is also the co-editor of The Revolution Starts at Home: Confronting Intimate Violence Within Activist Communities (South End Press, 2011) and Here Is a Pen: an Anthology of West Coast Kundiman Poets (Achiote Press, 2009). In Milwaukee, they are cream city review’s editor-in-chief. www.chinginchen.com

Victorio Reyes is an activist and artist. Reyes was featured in the anthology of emerging writers: Chorus, published by MTV Books and edited by Saul Williams. His poems are forthcoming or have been published in the Acentos Review, Mobius, and Word Riot. He holds an MFA degree from The Vermont College of Fine Arts and teaches poetry classes at Siena College. Reyes will serve on a panel entitled “Uncovering Hip Hop Poetry” at the upcoming AWP Conference. He was a member of the Hip Hop group, Broadcast Live; the group’s most recent release, Boomerang Metropolis, reached #25 on the College Music Journal Hip Hop Charts. Blending his writing and activism, Reyes has also been the executive director of The Social Justice Center of Albany (SJC) for the past 8 years.


25 for 25 Lambda Fellows Reading

Friday, February 28, 2014, 6-9pm, R Place Bar and Gril

619 E Pine St, Seattle, Washington 98122


The Lambda Literary Foundation presents the 25 for 25 Lambda Fellows Reading and Reunion.

Featured readers include:
Ames Hawkins
Brandy Wilson
Monica Carter
Cooper Lee Bombardier
Ching-In Chen
Meg Day
Tommy Theollyn

The 25 for 25 anthology, celebrates LLF’s 25th Anniversary. The E-Book features works by some of our community’s leading authors and original introductions by emerging writers they’ve influenced, many from the Lambda’s Emerging Voices Retreats.

Join us for this extraordinary reading and stay to meet some of Lambda’s Fellows.


midwest monster (input 5)

February 23, 2014

midwest monster (input 5)

Chelsea Wait

Midwest Monster (Input 4)

February 23, 2014


by Duncan

MIGC 14: “ANIMACY” Creative Showcase

February 21, 2014

Join us for an evening of film, performance, and readings on our 2014 MIGC theme: ANIMACY. The event will be held at Microlights, a community screening room and art venue at 2541 N. Bremen Street in Milwaukee, WI. Beer and wine as well as light refreshments (TAMALES) will be provided…while supplies last!

Free and open to the public. Program Includes:

Curious About Existence (2003) – 11 minutes
Beauty Plus Pity (2009) – 14 minutes
Lesser Apes (2011) – 13 minutes



Art installations by Ben Balcom, Chadwick Noellert, Megan Bigelow, and Sabrina Scott will be on display the duration of the conference in Curtin Hall 175, UWM.

Microlights can accommodate around 55 people. Arrive early or you won’t get in!

Doors @ 6:00

See you there!

midwest monster (input 3)

February 21, 2014

midwest monster (input 3)

via Cassie Nicholson

Midwest Monster (Input 2)

February 19, 2014

You guys know about vampires?  You know, vampires have no reflections in a mirror?  There’s this idea that monsters don’t have reflections in a mirror.  And what I’ve always thought isn’t that monsters don’t have reflections in a mirror.  It’s that if you want to make a human being into a monster, deny them, at the cultural level, any reflection of themselves.

—Junot Diaz

(via Freesia McKee, found quoted on the blog Black Girl Dangerous)

Midwest Monster (Input 1)

February 18, 2014

“How unusual bodies are treated is a critical historical question. In the United States they have been marked as ‘other,’ as monstrous, sinister, threatening, inferior, and unfortunate.  Once it was respectable to call those with unusual physical forms monsters, later not.” – Elizabeth Reis, Bodies in Doubt: an American History of Intersex

midwestern creative monster invitation

February 17, 2014

dear midwestern creatives (aka monsterlies):

this is a creative invitation

ever since i moved to the midwest (milwaukee), i have felt a variation of monster-ly

i have been thinking about the idea of a monster poetics, a poetry which smuggles/celebrates/straddles the border of what is human, creature, cyborg, queer, immigrant, monster, beast, future against the idea of the (nostalgic, historic, pastoral) midwest

if a monster is a legendary animal

if a monster is both animal and human and various

if a monster is a strange creature of such power to make others quake

if a monster is a deviant (in shape, behavior or character)

if a monster stimulates and undermines huge terror

then what does it mean for me/we to monster ourselves and each other?

starting today for the next month, i will post inputs (found or gathered) here to be re-mixed, collaged, re-spun, re-textured, for the sake of provocation and response

this is an open invitation to engage by contributing inputs (words, images, texts, audios and others) to be remixed/collaged/re-spun/re-textured and to be responded to

you can send me creations already made and/or in response by replying in the comments section of the blog post

i will continually make and re-mix the materials, using and recycling these inputs and, of course, post credit to all who participate and contribute, sometimes for public performance and/or possible publication

if you participate, you should feel free to do the same (as long as all who want to are credited appropriately)

this work is created in homage to Bhanu Kapil (Incubation: a Space for Monsters) and Sharon Bridgforth (River See)

thanks for reading & considering!


Codex Journal’s 1st Queer & People of Color issue

January 9, 2014

Pleased that my poem, “The Switchboard Operator,” has found a home in Codex Journal’s 1st Queer & People of Color issue, alongside Joseph O. Legaspi, Jacob Ricafrente, Sarah Medina, Heidi Rhodes, Daniel Olivas, Jim Elledge, Lisa Moore, & Nayelly Barrios. Thanks to Ruben Quesada for editing! #QPOC13


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