By THE POETRY QUESTION
Welcome to TPQ20, where Chris Margolin, Co-Editor of The Poetry Question, goes beyond the page with poets about their passions, process, pitfalls, and Poetry! Let’s expand the conversation!
The Poetry Question looks to expand the conversation around Poetry and Literature via reviews, interviews, op-eds, and interactions.
Discover more on www.thepoetryquestion.com
The Poetry Question looks to expand the conversation around Poetry and Literature via reviews, interviews, op-eds, and interactions.
Discover more on www.thepoetryquestion.com
Join Chris in conversation with hip hop legend, Sage Francis, about passions, process… well, really about life and music! Sage Francis is widely considered one of our generation’s greatest lyricists. His career derives mainly from gifted wordplay which creates vivid narratives to instigate as well as inspire, but since it often derives from an accumulation of public disdain and personal turmoil, it’s more about storming the castle than about watching the throne. Dubbed as the “forefather of indie-hop,” Francis originally earned acclaim in the early 2000’s by winning the most highly coveted titles of the emcee battle circuit. With little to no funding, Francis sustained himself by selling his innovative “Sick of” mixtapes, all made by hand on the floor of his Providence, RI apartment. These were essentially bootleg compilations full of select recordings from his 12” vinyl singles, demo sessions, live performances and radio freestyles. The popularity of these tapes birthed Strange Famous Records (SFR); a meager, one-man operation in 1999. Despite having no official distribution, Francis’ unique brand of music spread like wildfire via the advent of file sharing networks. This resulted in him attaining a massive cult-like following around the world, creating a demand for his albums and live performances at which point the bigger labels took notice. With his first studio album, Personal Journals (2002,) Francis daringly set aside the more boastful side of rap by catering to his poetic leanings and scathing socio-political commentary. In 2005 Sage Francis was the first hip-hop artist signed to Epitaph Records and soon became one of the highest selling independent artists of his genre. Rather than abandon his day-to-day grind at SFR, he channeled all of his newfound resources into it, allowing the label to expand in staff as well as roster. Having fulfilled his contract obligations with Epitaph Records, Sage Francis has returned to releasing music independently as he gears up to defeat the odds. Once again. “COPPER GONE”, Francis’ 6th studio album, dropped on June 3rd, 2014 via Strange Famous Records. This indie release managed to break Billboard’s Top 200 as well as iTunes top 5 for hip-hop in both the US and in the UK. In 2016 Sage Francis was granted an honorary patronage by the prestigious Trinity College in Dublin, Ireland for his contributions to literature. Francis continues to tour internationally and is developing a new group project with B. Dolan called EPIC BEARD MEN, slated for a 2018 release.
November 21, 2022
Join Chris in conversation with Kemi Alabi, author of Against Heaven (Graywolf Press), about passions, process, pitfalls, and Poetry! Kemi Alabi is the author of Against Heaven (Graywolf Press, 2022), selected by Claudia Rankine as winner of the 2021 Academy of American Poets First Book Award. Their poems and essays appear in the Atlantic, Poetry, the Nation, Boston Review, the BreakBeat Poets Vol. 2, Best New Poets 2019, and elsewhere. Selected by Chen Chen as winner of the 2020 Beacon Street Poetry Prize, Kemi has received Pushcart Prize, Best of the Net and Brittle Paper Award nominations along with fellowships from MacDowell, Civitella Ranieri, Tin House and Pink Door. Kemi believes in the world-shifting power of words and the radical imaginations of Black queer and trans people. As cultural strategy director of Forward Together, they built political power with cultural workers of color through programs like Echoing Ida, a home for Black women and nonbinary writers, and annual art campaigns like Trans Day of Resilience. The Echoing Ida Collection, coedited with Cynthia R. Greenlee and Janna Zinzi, is available now from Feminist Press. Born in Wisconsin on a Sunday in July, Kemi now lives in Chicago, IL.
November 14, 2022
BILLY COLLINS (fmr. UNITED STATES POET LAUREATE)
Join Chris in conversation with former United States Poet Laureate and author of Musical Tables (Random House), Billy Collins, about passions, process, pitfalls, and Poetry! Billy Collins is the author of twelve collections of poetry including Whale Day, The Rain in Portugal, Aimless Love, Horoscopes for the Dead, Ballistics, The Trouble with Poetry, Nine Horses, Sailing Alone Around the Room, Questions About Angels, The Art of Drowning, and Picnic, Lightning. He is also the editor of Poetry 180: A Turning Back to Poetry, 180 More: Extraordinary Poems for Every Day, and Bright Wings: An Illustrated Anthology of Poems About Birds. A former Distinguished Professor at Lehman College of the City University of New York, Collins served as Poet Laureate of the United States from 2001 to 2003 and as New York State Poet from 2004 to 2006. In 2016 he was inducted into the American Academy of Arts and Letters. He lives in Florida with his wife Suzannah.
November 07, 2022
Join Chris in conversation with performance poet, advocacy journalist, and teaching artist, Donney Rose, about passions, process, pitfalls, and Poetry! DONNEY ROSE - Baton Rouge native Donney Rose is a Maryland-based performance poet, advocacy journalist, and teaching artist. He is the creator of THE AMERICAN AUDIT, a suite of multi-media spoken word projects that examines the Black American experience by infusing history, creative verse, and qualitative research into the performance text. His work, which spans two decades on stages and in classrooms, guides others in their creative journeys and brings nuanced and colorful perspectives through the medium of spoken word and other creative outlets.
October 31, 2022
COURTNEY FAYE TAYLOR
Join Chris of The Poetry Question in conversation with Courtney Faye Taylor, author of Concentrate (Graywolf Press) and winner of the Cave Canem Poetry Prize, about passions, process, pitfalls, and Poetry! COURTNEY FAYE TAYLOR is a writer and visual artist. She is the author of Concentrate, forthcoming from Graywolf Press in November 2022. It is the winner of the Cave Canem Poetry Prize selected by Rachel Eliza Griffiths and was a finalist for the National Poetry Series. Courtney earned her BA from Agnes Scott College and her MFA from the University of Michigan Helen Zell Writers’ Program where she received the Hopwood Prize in Poetry. She is also the winner of the 92Y Discovery Prize and an Academy of American Poets Prize. The recipient of residencies and fellowships from Cave Canem and the Charlotte Street Foundation, Courtney’s work can be found in Poetry Magazine, The Nation, Ploughshares, Best New Poets, The New Republic and elsewhere.
October 24, 2022
Join Chris of The Poetry Question in a sit down with Luther Hughes, author of Shiver in the Leaves, about passions, process, pitfalls, and Poetry. LUTHER HUGHES is the author of the debut poetry collection, A Shiver in the Leaves, (BOA Editions), and the chapbook Touched (Sibling Rivalry Press, 2018). He is the founder of Shade Literary Arts, a literary organization for queer writers of color, and co-hosts The Poet Salon podcast with Gabrielle Bates and Dujie Tahat. Recipient of the Ruth Lilly and Dorothy Sargent Rosenberg Fellowship and 92Y Discovery Poetry Prize, his work has been published in various journal, magazines, and newspapers. Luther was born and raised in Seattle, where he currently lives.
October 17, 2022
Join Chris of The Poetry Question in a sit down with Jasminne Mendez, Author of City Without Altar (Noemi Press), about passions, process, pitfalls, & Poetry! Jasminne Mendez is a Dominican-American poet, playwright, translator and award winning author of several books for children and adults. She is the author of two hybrid memoirs, Island of Dreams (Floricanto Press) and Night-Blooming Jasmin(n)e: Personal Essays and Poetry (Arte Público Press). Her second YA memoir, Islands Apart: Becoming Dominican American (Arte Público Press) is forthcoming in May 2022 and her debut poetry collection, City Without Altar, was a finalist for the Noemi Press Book Award for Poetry and will be released in August 2022. Her debut middle grade book Anina del Mar Jumps In (Dial) is a novel in verse about a young girl diagnosed with Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis and is set to release in 2023. Her debut picture book Josefina’s Habichuelas (Arte Público Press), was released last year. Mendez has had poetry and essays published by or forthcoming in numerous journals and anthologies including The Kenyon Review, New England Review, the YA Latinx Anthology Wild Tongues Can’t be Tamed edited by Saraciea Fennell (Flatiron/Macmillan), and in The BreakBeat Poets Vol. 4: LatiNext (Haymarket Books). She has translated and written poetry and a libretto for the Houston Grand Opera and she translated Amanda Gorman’s best-selling Change Sings into the Spanish edition La canción del cambio. The dramatized version of her play in verse City Without Altar received its world premiere at Milagro theatre in Portland, Oregon this spring. She is an MFA graduate of the creative writing program at the Rainier Writing Workshop at Pacific Lutheran University, a University of Houston alumni, and a Canto Mundo Fellow. Based in Houston, she is the Co-Founder and Program Director of the Houston based Latinx literary arts organization Tintero Projects and a co-host to the poetry and writing podcast series InkWell a collaboration between Tintero Projects and Inprint Houston. She is a Canto Mundo Fellow, a Kenyon Review Writer’s Workshop Peter Taylor Fellow and a Macondo and VONA alumni. When she’s not writing or napping in her hammock she enjoys playing with sand on the beach with her daughter, swimming in the ocean or a pool, practicing yoga, baking cupcakes and laughing with her partner in poetry and in life Lupe Mendez - the Texas State Poet Laureate.
October 03, 2022
SAIDA AGOSTINI BOSTIC
Join Chris in a sit down with Saida Agostini Bostic, author of Let the Dead In (Alan Squire Publishing), about passions, process, pitfalls, and Poetry! Saida’s first collection of poems, let the dead in, was a finalist for the Center of African American Poetry & Poetics’ 2020 Book Prize as well as the New Issues Poetry Prize. She is the author of STUNT (Neon Hemlock, October 2020), a chapbook exploring the history of Nellie Jackson, a Black woman entrepreneur who operated a brothel for sixty years in Natchez, Mississippi. Her poetry can also be found in the Black Ladies Brunch Collective's anthology Not Without Our Laughter, Barrelhouse Magazine, Hobart Pulp, Plume, and other publications. A Cave Canem Graduate Fellow, Saida has been awarded honors and support for her work by the Watering Hole and Blue Mountain Center, as well as a 2018 Rubys Grant funding travel to Guyana to support the completion of her first manuscript. She is a Best of the Net Finalist and a two-time Pushcart Prize nominee.
September 26, 2022
DR. DESTINY O. BIRDSONG
Join Chris in a sit down with Dr. Destiny O. Birdsong, author of Nobody’s Magic (Grand Central Publishing) and Negotiations (Tin House), about passions, process, pitfalls, and Poetry! Destiny O. Birdsong is a poet, novelist, and essayist whose work has appeared in the Paris Review Daily, African American Review, and Catapult, among other publications. Her debut poetry collection, Negotiations, was published in 2020 by Tin House and was longlisted for the 2021 PEN/Voelcker Award. Her debut novel, Nobody’s Magic, was published in February 2022 from Grand Central Publishing. During July 2022, she was the Hurston-Wright Foundation’s inaugural Writer-in-Residence at Rutgers University-Newark. She will also serve as an Artist-in-Residence at the University of Tennessee-Knoxville from 2022-2023. Connect with her below.
September 19, 2022
Join Chris in a sit-down with the legendary Sandra Cisneros, author of the upcoming Woman Without Shame (Alfred A. Knopf), about passions, process, pitfalls, and poetry! From the Sandra Cisneros Website: I was born in Chicago in 1954, the third child and only daughter in a family of seven children. I studied at Loyola University of Chicago (B.A. English, 1976) and the University of Iowa (M.F.A. Creative Writing, 1978). I've worked as a teacher and counselor to high-school dropouts, as an artist-in-the-schools where I taught creative writing at every level except first grade and pre-school, a college recruiter, an arts administrator, and as a visiting writer at a number of universities including the University of California, Berkeley, and the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor. My books include a chapbook of poetry, Bad Boys (Mango Press, 1980); two full-length poetry books, My Wicked Wicked Ways (Third Woman Press, 1987; Random House, 1992) and Loose Woman (Alfred A. Knopf, 1994); a collection of stories, Woman Hollering Creek and Other Stories (Random House, 1991); a children's book, Hairs/Pelitos (Alfred A. Knopf, 1994); the novels The House on Mango Street (Vintage, 1991) and Caramelo (Knopf, 2002), and the picture book Have You Seen Marie? (Knopf 2012). A House of My Own: Stories from My Life (Alfred A. Knopf, 2015) is a collection of personal essays, and Puro Amor (Sarabande 2018) is a bilingual story that I also illustrated. Forthcoming works include the Spanish and English story Martita, I Remember You/Martita te recuerdo (Vintage 2021) and a poetry collection, Mujer Sin Vergüenza (2022).
September 12, 2022
Join Chris in a sit-down with Aurielle Marie, author of Gumbo Ya Ya (University of Pittsburgh Press), about passions, process, pitfalls, and poetry! Award-winning poet, essayist, and cultural strategist Aurielle Marie (they/she) is a Black queer storyteller, a political organizer, and child of the Deep South by way of Atlanta. They received their Bachelor’s in Social Justice Strategy and Hip-Hop Theory from the Evergreen State College. Aurielle’s poetry has been featured or is forthcoming in the TriQuarterly, Southeast Review, Black Warrior, BOAAT Journal, Sycamore Review, Adroit Journal, Vinyl Poetry, Palette Poetry, and Ploughshares. She's received invitations to fellowships from Lambda Literary, VONA Voices, and Tin House. Aurielle is a 2017 winner of the Blue Mesa Review poetry award. She’s the Lambda Literary 2019 Poetry Emerging Writer-in-Residence. She won the 2019 Ploughshares Emerging Writers Award for Poetry. Aurielle’s poetry debut, Gumbo Ya Ya is the 2020 winner of the Cave Canem Poetry Prize, and is out from the University of Pittsburgh Press.
September 05, 2022
Join Chris in a sit-down with Ink, EiC of Stanza Cannon and author of 61 Central (Finishing Line Press), about passions, process, pitfalls, and poetry! Andrew “Ink” Feindt Most people tend to feel more comfortable with real names, but Ink likes to be called Ink. In an editorial role, he loves working with independent presses and authors to maintain original voices while bringing out the best in their words. As a writer, Ink has been published in journals foreign and domestic and has one book published by Piscataway House Publications (Death Loves a Drinking Game) as well as a chapbook published by Finishing Line Press (61 Central). As a member of an audience, be it at an academic reading, slam, or comedy showcase, Ink generally enjoys the energy of people enthralled by their own wordplay and the wordplay itself even more so.
August 29, 2022
Join Chris in a sit down with H. MELT, about passions, process, pitfalls, and Poetry! H. Melt is a poet, artist and educator who celebrates trans liberation. They are the author of The Plural, The Blurring and editor of Subject to Change: Trans Poetry & Conversation. Lambda Literary awarded them the Judith A. Markowitz Award for Emerging LGBTQ Writers.
August 22, 2022
Join Chris in a sitdown with actor, writer, producer, and all around bad-ass, Buddy Wakefield, about passions, process, pitfalls, and poetry! BUDDY WAKEFIELD is an actor, writer, producer, and three-time world champion spoken word artist featured on the BBC, HBO’s Def Poetry Jam, ABC Radio National and has been signed to both Sage Francis’ Strange Famous Records as well as Ani DiFranco’s Righteous Babe Records. In 2004 he won the first Individual World Poetry Slam Finals thanks to the support of anthropologist and producer Norman Lear, then went on to share the stage with nearly every notable performance poet in the world in over 2000 venues internationally from The Great Lawn of Central Park, Zimbabwe’s Shoko Festival and Scotland’s Oran Mor to San Quentin State Penitentiary, House of Blues New Orleans and The Basement in Sydney, Australia. Buddy has been a busker in Amsterdam, a street vendor in Spain, a team leader in Singapore, a re-delivery boy, a candy maker, a street sweeper, a bartender, a maid, a construction worker, a bull rider, a notably slow triathlete, a facilitator at Quantum Learning Network, and is the most toured performance poet in history. He is the founder of Awful Good Writers, and the producer and host of Heavy Hitters Festival 2020, a summer-long series of online shows and workshops featuring thirty of the most beloved performance poets alive. The inaugural author released on Write Bloody Publishing, and an original Board of Directors member with Youth Speaks Seattle, Buddy is published in dozens of books internationally with work used to win multiple national collegiate debate and forensics competitions. His first short film, Farmly, directed by Jamie DeWolf, won Best of Texas at the Literally Short Film Fest, and the USA Film Festival. In the spring of 2001 Buddy left his position as the executive assistant at a biomedical firm in Gig Harbor, WA, sold or gave away everything he owned, moved to the small town of Honda Civic, then set out to live for a living. His aim was to tour North American poetry venues for two years. He did not stop. Wakefield, who isn’t concerned with what poetry is or is not, delivers raw, rounded, disarming performances of humor and heart.
August 15, 2022
Join Chris in a sitdown with Maya Marshall, author of All the Blood Involved in Love and an Editor at Haymarket Books, about passions, process, pitfalls, and poetry! Maya Marshall is the author of the debut full-length poetry collection All the Blood Involved in Love (Haymarket Books, 2022) and the chapbook Secondhand (Dancing Girl Press, 2016). Marshall teaches at Emory University where she serves as the 2021-2023 Creative Writing Fellow in Poetry. She has also served as artist in residence at Northwestern University and as faculty for Loyola University Chicago. She holds fellowships from MacDowell, Vermont Studio Center, Callaloo, Watering Hole, Community of Writers, and Cave Canem. She is cofounder of underbelly, the journal on the practical magic of poetic revision. She is an editor for Haymarket Books.
August 09, 2022
Join Chris in a sitdown with Brian Tierney, the author of Rise and Float (Milkweed), about passions, process, pitfalls, poetry, and a whole lot of music! Brian Tierney is the author of Rise and Float, winner of the 20-2021 Jake Adam York Prize (Milkweed, forthcoming Feb. 2022). His poetry and prose have appeared in such journals as Paris Review, Kenyon Review, AGNI, NER, The Adroit Journal, and others. A former Wallace Stegner Fellow at Stanford University, and a graduate of the Bennington College MFA Writing Seminars, he was named among Narrative Magazine’s 2013 “30 Below 30” emerging writers, and is winner of the 2018 George Bogin Memorial Award from The Poetry Society of America. Raised in Philadelphia, he lives in Oakland, Ca., where he teaches poetry at The Writing Salon.
August 01, 2022
Join Chris in a sitdown with I.S. Jones, author of Spells of My Name, and Editor at Frontier Poetry, about passions, process, pitfalls, and Poetry! I.S. Jones is an American / Nigerian poet, essayist, and music journalist. She is a Graduate Fellow with The Watering Hole and holds fellowships from Callaloo, BOAAT Writer’s Retreat, and Brooklyn Poets. She is the co-editor of The Young African Poets Anthology: The Fire That Is Dreamed Of (Agbowó, 2020) and served as the inaugural nonfiction guest editor for Lolwe. She is an Editor at 20.35 Africa: An Anthology of Contemporary Poetry, freelanced for Complex, Revolt TV, NBC News THINK, and elsewhere. Her works have appeared or are forthcoming in Guernica, Washington Square Review, LA Review of Books, The Rumpus, The Offing and elsewhere. Her poem “Vanity” was chosen by Khadijah Queen as a finalist for the 2020 Sublingua Prize for Poetry. She received her MFA in Poetry at UW–Madison where she was the inaugural 2019–2020 Kemper K. Knapp University Fellowship and the 2021-2022 Hoffman Hall Emerging Artist Fellowship recipient. From 2019 to 2022, she served as the Director of the Watershed Reading Series with Art + Literature Laboratory, a community-driven contemporary arts center in Madison, Wisconsin. Her chapbook Spells of My Name (2021) is out with Newfound. She is currently the Editor-in-Chief of Frontier Poetry.
July 25, 2022
Join Chris in a sitdown with Esteban Rodriguez, author of Ordinary Bodies (word west press 2022), about passions, process, pitfalls, and poetry! Esteban Rodríguez is the author of six poetry collections, most recently Ordinary Bodies (word west press 2022), and the essay collection Before the Earth Devours Us (Split/Lip Press 2021). He is the Interviews Editor for the EcoTheo Review, Senior Book Reviews Editor for Tupelo Quarterly, and Associate Poetry Editor for AGNI. He currently lives in south Texas. Please leave a review and rating. Thank You!
July 18, 2022
RONNIE K. STEPHENS
Join Chris of The Poetry Question in a sit-down with Poet-Historian, Ronnie K. Stephens to talk about passions, process, pitfalls, and poetry! Ronnie K. Stephens is the author of two full-length poetry collections, Universe in the Key of Matryoshka and They Rewrote Themselves Legendary, as well as The Kaleidoscope Sisters, a young adult novel. He is focused on developing a broader body of academic essays related to American poetry and unsettling the K-16 classroom through diverse texts.
July 11, 2022
Join Chris in conversation with Khalisa Rae, author of Ghost in a Black Girl's Throat (Red Hen Press), about passions, process, pitfalls, and poetry! -- Khalisa Rae is an award-winning multi-hyphenate poet, educator, and journalist based in Durham, NC. She is best known for her community activism and nonprofit management as the co-founder of Poet.she (Greensboro), the Invisibility Project, and Athenian Press- QPOC writer’s collective, resource center, and bookstore in Wilmington, NC. As a former English professor and public school teaching artist, Khalisa’s passion lies in uplifting women and youth through community engagement. She has served as an outreach and program director for various nonprofits, as well as a teaching artist, and is always looking for a way to give back and serve as a mentor. Her first chapbook, Real Girls Have Real Problems, was published in 2012 by Jacar Press and later adapted into a sold-out play called, “The Seven Deadly Sins of Being a Woman” which was accompanied by a podcast. Her early work with stage performance and slam poetry landed her on stage at the National Poetry Slam, Women of the World Poetry Slam, Individual World Poetry Slam, and Southern Fried Regional Poetry Slam, among others. During her time as Outreach Director of the YWCA, Khalisa completed her MFA at Queens University of Charlotte where she studied under renowned authors, Claudia Rankine and Ada Limon. There she wrote Outside the Canon– a thesis dissertation on the history of spoken word and its isolation from the literary canon as a result of systematic racism. Currently, Khalisa is a 4-time Best of the Net nominee, multi-Pushcart Prize nominee, and the author of the 2021 debut collection, Ghost in a Black Girl’s Throat, from Red Hen Press. Khalisa’s performance poetry has led her to speak in front of thousands over the course of her career. She is a seasoned conference panelist and speaker, and the founder and creator of #PublishingPaidMe BIPOC Writers/Editors Panel at the AWP conference, as well as annual speaker at the SEWSA Women’s Conference. Notably, she is the former Gen Z Culture Editor of Blavity News and former Managing Equity and Inclusion Editor of Carve Magazine. As a champion for Black queer narratives, Khalisa’s articles appear in Fodor’s, Autostraddle, Vogue, Catapult, LitHub, Bitch Media, Black Femme Collective, Body.com, NBC-BLK, and others. Her work also appears in Electric Lit, Southern Humanities Review, Pinch, Tishman Review, Frontier Poetry, Rust & Moth, PANK, HOBART, among countless others. Poetry has led Khalisa to be a Watering Hole Fellow, Frost Place Fellow, Winter Tangerine Fellow, among other residencies and fellowships. Currently, Khalisa serves as Senior Writer at Jezebel, Assistant Editor of Glass Poetry, and co-founder of Think in Ink and the WOC Speak reading series. You can also find her teaching Spring 2022 at Catapult Classes. Her YA novel in verse, Unlearning Eden, is forthcoming in 2023.
June 27, 2022
MAHONGANY L. BROWNE
Join Chris Margolin of The Poetry Question in conversation with Mahogany L. Brown, author of Woke Baby, Chlorine Sky, and Vinyl Moon (Penguin Random House), about passions, process, pitfalls, and Poetry! Mahogany L. Browne is the executive director of JustMedia, a media-literacy initiative designed to support the ground-work of criminal justice leaders and community members. This position is informed by her career as a writer, organizer, and educator. Mahogany has received fellowships from Agnes Gund, AIR Serenbe, Cave Canem, Poets House, Mellon Research, and Rauschenberg, and she founded the diverse literary campaign the Woke Baby Book Fair. She is also the author of Chlorine Sky, Woke: A Young Poet’s Call to Justice, Woke Baby, Black Girl Magic, the poetry collection I Remember Death by Its Proximity to What I Love, and Vinyl Moon. Mahogany is based in Brooklyn, New York, and is the first-ever poet in residence at Lincoln Center. You can find Mahogany online at mobrowne.com and @mobrowne.
June 20, 2022
Join Chris Margolin of The Poetry Questions in a sit-down with Jennifer Huang, author of Return Flight (Milkweed Editions), to talk about passions, process, pitfalls, and poetry! Author bio: Jennifer Huang is the author of Return Flight, which was awarded the 2021 Ballard Spahr Prize for Poetry from Milkweed Editions. Their poems have appeared in POETRY, The Rumpus, and Narrative Magazine, among other places; and they have received recognition from the Academy of American Poets, Brooklyn Poets, North American Taiwan Studies Association, and more. In 2020, Jennifer earned their M.F.A. in Poetry at the University of Michigan Helen Zell Writers' Program. Born in Maryland to Taiwanese immigrants, they have since called many places home. The Poetry Question
June 13, 2022
UNITED STATES POET LAUREATE: ADA LIMÓN
Sit down with Chris and Courtney Margolin, Co-EiCs of The Poetry Question, as they talk with Ada Limón, author of The Hurting Kind (Milkweed Editions), about passions, process, pitfalls, and poetry! Ada Limón is the author of six books of poetry, including The Carrying, which won the National Book Critics Circle Award for Poetry. Her book Bright Dead Things was nominated for the National Book Award, the National Book Critics Circle Award, and the Kingsley Tufts Poetry Award. Her work has been supported most recently by a Guggenheim Fellowship. She grew up in Sonoma, California and now lives in Lexington, Kentucky where she writes, teaches remotely, and hosts the critically-acclaimed poetry podcast, The Slowdown. Her new book of poetry, The Hurting Kind, is out now from Milkweed Editions.
June 06, 2022
Join Chris in a one-on-one with EiC of Riot in Your Throat Press and author of and Winner of the Jack McCarthy book prize (Write Bloody, 2023), Courtney LeBlanc, about passions, process, pitfalls, and Poetry! Courtney LeBlanc is a Word Perv. She is a poet, feminist, runner, dog mom who lives in Arlington, Virginia. LeBlanc is the author of the full length collections Exquisite Bloody, Beating Heart (Riot in Your Throat) and Beautiful & Full of Monsters (Vegetarian Alcoholic Press). They are the winner of the Jack McCarthy book prize and their next collection of poetry will be published by Write Bloody in spring 2023. She is also the founder and editor-in-chief of Riot in Your Throat, an independent poetry press. They love nail polish, tattoos, and a soy latte each morning.
April 18, 2022
Join Chris and Courtney in a sit down with Kristin Garth, the Editor in Cheif of Pink Plastic House, for a conversation about passions, process, pitfalls, and poetry! Kristin Garth is a Pushcart, Best of the Net & Rhysling nominated sonnet stalker. She is a 2020 Best of the Net Finalist. Her sonnets have stalked journals like Glass, Yes, Five:2:One, Luna Luna and more. She is the author of two micro chapbooks of poetry The Legend of the Were Mer (Thirty West) and Glitter & Guillotines (Hedgehog Poetry Press). In addition, she has authored numerous chapbooks of poetry including Shut Your Eyes, Succubi, Pink Plastic House, Atheist Barbie (Maverick Duck Press), Golden Ticket (Roaring Junior Press), Shakespeare for Sociopaths, Dewy Decimals (The Hedgehog Poetry Press), The Death of Alice in Wonderland (Alien Buddha Dress), Girlarium (Fahmidan Press), and Sock Slut (Slang Media Lab). In addition, she has authored two full-length poetry collections Candy Cigarette Womanchild Noir (Hedgehog Poetry Press) and The Stakes (Really Serious Literature). Garth is also the author of three experimental novels — Flutter Southern Gothic Fever Dream, Crow Carriage and The Avalon Hayes Mysteries. With collaborators, she has co-authored three books of poetry, A Victorian Dollhousing Ceremony, Good Girls Games and Pensacola Girls. She is also the dollhouse architect/editor in chief of Pink Plastic House a tiny journal. When she’s not writing sonnets, she’s photographing her socks for Instagram and her Barbies for the poets of the Pink Plastic House. You can see her sonnets, socks and Barbie photography on Twitter, @lolaandjolie and @pphatinyjournal; Instagram, @kristiningridgarth and @pinkplastichouse. You can also read her editorial poetry column for Pink Plastic House, The Dollhouse Architect’s Digest.
April 11, 2022
Join Chris in a one-on-one sit down with Shaindel Beers, Poetry Editor of Contrary, about passions, process, pitfalls, and poetry! Shaindel Beers’ poetry, fiction, and creative nonfiction has appeared in numerous journals and anthologies. She is currently an instructor of English at Blue Mountain Community College in Pendleton, Oregon, in Eastern Oregon’s high desert and serves as Poetry Editor of Contrary. A Brief History of Time, her first full-length poetry collection, was released by Salt Publishing in 2009. Her second collection, The Children’s War and Other Poems was released in February of 2013. Her most recent collection, Secure Your Own Mask, won the White Pine Poetry Prize for 2017. Shaindel was raised in Argos, Indiana, a town of 2,000 people. She studied literature at Huntingdon College in Montgomery, Alabama (BA), and at the University of Chicago (MA) before earning her MFA in Creative Writing (Poetry) at Vermont College of Fine Arts. She has taught at colleges and universities in Illinois and Florida but feels settled in the Eastern Oregon high desert town of Pendleton. Her awards include: First place Karen Fredericks and Frances Willitts Poetry Prize (2008), Grand Prize Co-winner Trellis Magazine sestina contest (2008), First place Dylan Days Poetry Competition (2007), Award-winning poem published, Eleventh Muse (2006), Honorable mention, Dorothy Sargent Rosenberg Poetry Awards (2005), Honorable mention, Juniper Creek/Unnamed Writers Award(2005), and the title poem from this collection, “A Brief History of Time,”was nominated for a Pushcart prize (2004).
April 04, 2022
Join Chris & Courtney of The Poetry Question in a sit down with Julian Randall, author of Refuse (Pitt, 2018), Pilar Ramirez & the Escape from Zafa (Holt), and the upcoming The Dead Don't Need Reminding: Essays (Bold Type Books), about passions, process, pitfalls, and poetry. Julian Randall is a Living Queer Black poet from Chicago. He has received fellowships from Cave Canem, CantoMundo, Callaloo, BOAAT and the Watering Hole. Julian is the recipient of a Pushcart Prize. Julian is the winner of the 2019 Betty Berzon Emerging Writer Award from the Publishing Triangle. His writing has been published in New York Times Magazine, Ploughshares, and POETRY, and anthologized in Black Boy Joy (which debuted at #1 on the NYT Best Seller list), Wild Tongues Can’t Be Tamed and Furious Flower. He has essays in The Atlantic, Vibe Magazine, Los Angeles Review of Books, and other venues. He holds an MFA in Poetry from Ole Miss. He is the author of Refuse (Pitt, 2018), winner of the 2017 Cave Canem Poetry Prize and a finalist for a 2019 NAACP Image Award, as well as the middle grade novel Pilar Ramirez And The Escape from Zafa (Holt, Winter 2022), and The Dead Don’t Need Reminding: Essays (Bold Type Books, Spring 2023). He can be found on Twitter @JulianThePoet.
March 28, 2022
JASON B. CRAWFORD
Join Chris and Courtney in a sitdown with Jason B. Crawford, author of Year of the Unicorn Kidz (Sundress Publications), about passions, process, pitfalls, and poetry! jason b. crawford (They/Them) is a writer born in Washington DC, raised in Lansing, MI. Their debut chapbook collection Summertime Fine is out through Variant Lit. Their second chapbook Twerkable Moments is out from Paper Nautilus Press. Their third chapbook, Good Boi, is forthcoming from Neon Hemlock press in fall 2021. Their debut Full Length Year of the Unicorn Kidz will be out in 2022 from Sundress Publications. crawford holds a Bachelor of Science in Creative Writing from Eastern Michigan University and is the co-founder of The Knight’s Library Magazine. crawford is the winner of the Courtney Valentine Prize for Outstanding Work by a Millennial Artist, Vella Chapbook Contest, and Variant Lit Chapbook Contest. They are the 2021 OutWrite chapbook contest winner in poetry. Their work can be found in Split Lip Magazine, Glass Poetry, Four Way Review, Voicemail poems, FreezeRay Poetry, HAD, among others. They are a current poetry MFA candidate at The New School. Website: JasonBCrawford.com Instagram: jasonbcrawford Twitter: @jasonbcrawford Facebook: By Jason B. Crawford
March 21, 2022
Join Chris and Courtney Margolin of The Poetry Question in a sitdown with Saeed Jones, author of Alive at the End of the World (Coffee House Press), about passions, process, pitfalls, and poetry! Saeed Jones is the author of the memoir HOW WE FIGHT FOR OUR LIVES, winner of the 2019 Kirkus Prize for Nonfiction, as well as the poetry collection PRELUDE TO BRUISE, winner of the 2015 PEN/Joyce Osterweil Award for Poetry and the 2015 Stonewall Book Award/Barbara Gittings Literature Award. Their debut poetry collection was also a finalist for the 2015 National Book Critics Circle Award and awards from Lambda Literary and the Publishing Triangle in 2015. Their next poetry collection, ALIVE AT THE END OF THE WORLD, is forthcoming from Coffee House Press in Fall 2022.
March 14, 2022
KYLE TRAN MYHRE (GUANTE)
Join Chris and Courtney in a sit down with Kyle Tran Myhre (Guante), author of Not a Lot of Reasons to Sing, But Enough (Button Poetry), about passions, process, pitfalls, and poetry! Kyle Tran Myhre (also known as Guante) is a poet, educator, and activist based in Minneapolis, MN. His work explores the relationships between identity, power, and resistance, and he’s performed everywhere from the United Nations, to music festivals like Eaux Claires and Soundset, to countless colleges, universities, and conferences. He’s also been part of two National Poetry Slam championship teams, given a TEDx Talk, and published two books via Button Poetry. Whether writing about men’s roles in ending gender violence, challenging dominant narratives related to race and racism, or just telling stories about the different jobs he’s had, Tran Myhre strives to cultivate a deeper, more critical engagement with social justice issues, one based in both empathy and agency. An educator as well as a performing artist, Tran Myhre completed his Masters studies at the University of Minnesota with a focus on spoken word, critical pedagogy, and social justice education; in that spirit, his performances use poems as jumping-off points for authentic dialogue, critical thinking, and community-building.
March 07, 2022
MX. FAYLITA HICKS
Join Chris and Courtney of The Poetry Question in a sit down with Mx. Faylita Hicks, author of Hoodwitch (Acre Books) and EiC of Black Femme Collective, about passions, process, pitfalls, and Poetry! FAYLITA HICKS (she/they) is the author of HoodWitch (Acre Books, 2019), a finalist for the 2020 Lambda Literary Award for Bisexual Poetry, the 2019 Balcones Poetry Prize, and the 2019 Julie Suk Award. The Editor-in-Chief of Black Femme Collective, they currently serve as the 2022 Writer-in-Residence for the Texas After Violence Project. In June 2021, they became a voting member of the Recording Academy/Grammys as a spoken word artist. Hicks is the recipient of fellowships and residencies from Black Mountain Institute, Broadway Advocacy Coalition, Civil Rights Corps, The Dots Between, Jack Jones Literary Arts, Lambda Literary, Tin House, and the Right of Return USA. Their work has been featured in or is forthcoming in Adroit, American Poetry Review, the Cincinnati Review, Ecotone, Kenyon Review, Longreads, Poetry Magazine, The Rumpus, Slate, Texas Observer, Yale Review, amongst others. Their poetry is anthologized in The Long Devotion: Poets Writing Motherhood, What Tells You Ripeness: Black Writing on Nature, and When There Are Nine (Pangyrus, 2021). Their personal account of their time in pretrial incarceration in Hays County is featured in the ITVS Independent Lens 2019 documentary, “45 Days in a Texas Jail,” and the Brave New Films 2021 documentary narrated by Mahershala Ali, “Racially Charged: America’s Misdemeanor Problem.” Hicks received a BA in English from Texas State University-San Marcos and an MFA in Creative Writing from Sierra Nevada University.
February 28, 2022
Join Chris of The Poetry Question in a one-on-one about passions, process, pitfalls, and poetry with the author of Finna (Penguin Random House), Nate Marshall. Nate Marshall is an award-winning writer, editor, educator, and MC. His most recent book, Finna, was recognized as one of the best books of 2020 by NPR and The New York Public Library. His first book, Wild Hundreds, was honored with the Black Caucus of the American Library Association’s award for Poetry Book of the Year and The Great Lakes College Association’s New Writer Award. He was also an editor of The BreakBeat Poets: New American Poetry in the Age of Hip-Hop. Marshall co-wrote the play No Blue Memories: The Life of Gwendolyn Brooks with Eve Ewing. He also wrote the audio drama Bruh Rabbit & The Fantastic Telling of Remington Ellis, Esq., which was produced by Make-Believe Association. Marshall records hip-hop as a solo artist and with the group Daily Lyrical Product. Marshall is an experienced and versatile educator, working with learners of all ages in both academic and community settings. He co-wrote Chicago Public School's first literary arts curriculum and develops lesson plans using creative writing to help participants discuss social justice, mental health, community development, and other issues. He is an assistant professor of English at Colorado College. He previously served as the Assistant Director of Wabash College’s Malcolm X Institute of Black Studies and the Director of National Programs at Young Chicago Authors. Marshall has taught in a number of traditional and community-based settings including Wabash College, Young Chicago Authors, Northwestern University, InsideOut Literary Arts, and the University of Michigan. Nate is a member of The Dark Noise Collective and co-directs Crescendo Literary, a partnership that develops community-engaged arts events and educational resources as a form of cultural organizing. As a young person Nate won Chicago’s Louder Than A Bomb Youth Poetry Festival and was a finalist at Brave New Voices International Youth Poetry Slam. Nate was born at Roseland Community Hospital and raised in the West Pullman neighborhood of Chicago. He is a proud Chicago Public Schools alumnus. Nate completed his MFA in Creative Writing at The University of Michigan’s Helen Zell Writers' Program. He holds a B.A. in English and African American Diaspora Studies from Vanderbilt University. Marshall has received fellowships from Cave Canem, The Poetry Foundation, and The University of Michigan. Nate loves his family, friends, Black people, dope art, literature, history, comedy, arguing about top 5 lists, and beating you in spades.
February 23, 2022
JOAN KWON GLASS
Join Chris & Courtney of The Poetry Question in a sit down conversation with Joan Kwon Glass, author of Night Swim (Diode Editions), about passions, process, pitfalls, and poetry! Joan Kwon Glass (B.A./M.A.T. Smith College) is the author of “Night Swim,” winner of the 2021 Diode Editions Book Contest and the micro chapbook “Bloodline,” winner of the 2021 Harbor Review Washburn Prize, and author of poetry chapbooks “How to Make Pancakes For a Dead Boy” (Harbor Editions, 2022) & “If Rust Can Grow on the Moon” (Milk & Cake Press, 2022). She was a Runner-Up for the 2021 Sundress Publications Chapbook Contest, & a 2021 finalist for the Harbor Review’s Editor’s Prize, the Subnivean Award & the Lumiere Review Writing Contest, as well as a semi-finalist for the Thirty West Chapbook Contest, Ralph Angel Poetry Prize & the Five South Poetry Prize. She serves as Poet Laureate (2021-2025) for the city of Milford, Connecticut, Poetry Co-Editor for West Trestle Review and Poetry Reader at Rogue Agent. Joan’s work explores trauma, grief, memory, motherhood, and recovery. She is a mixed-race (hapa) Korean American who grew up in Michigan and South Korea & she finds inspiration in the writings of Rachel McKibbens, Lucille Clifton, Eugenia Leigh, Margaret Atwood, Anne Sexton & Ellen Bass. Since 2018, her poems have been nominated multiple times for the Pushcart Prize and for Best of the Net. Pre-order NIGHT SWIM now!
February 21, 2022
Join Chris and Courtney of The Poetry Question in a sit down with Jae Nichelle, poet of page and stage, in a conversation about passions, process, pitfalls, and poetry! With over 50 million views on Facebook and 1 million on YouTube, Jae Nichelle is a viral spoken word artist based in Atlanta by way of Louisiana. Her work has been featured in Best New Poets 2020 and on several poetry platforms, and she's been winning poetry slams since she was 16. Her guilty pleasures include crop tops, taco bell, and starting projects that she'll never finish. Looking for professional ghostwriting services? Check out Jae’s other site!
February 16, 2022
Join Chris and Courtney in a sit down with Praise Osawaru, Contributing Editor at Barren Magazine, Reader for Chestnut review, and 1st place winner of the 2021 Valiant Scribe Poetry Prize. Praise Osawaru (he/him) is a writer of Bini descent. A Best of the Net, Pushcart Prize, and Nina Riggs Poetry Award nominee; his work appears or is forthcoming in Agbowó, FIYAH, Frontier Poetry, Down River Road, The Maine Review, and Savant-Garde, among others. He's the first-place winner of the 2021 Valiant Scribe Poetry Prize, the second-place winner of the Nigerian NewsDirect Poetry Prize 2020, and a finalist for the 2021 Stephen A. DiBiase Poetry Prize & the 2021 Dan Veach Prize For Younger poets. He's a Contributing Editor for Barren Magazine and a reader for Chestnut Review.
February 14, 2022
Join Chris, of The Poetry Question, in a one-on-one with KB, author of How To Identify Yourself with a Wound (Kallisto Gaia Press), about passions, process, pitfalls, and poetry! KB Brookins (also known as KB) is a Black/queer/transmasculine poet, essayist, artivist, and cultural worker from Stop Six, Fort Worth, Texas. Their poems are published or forthcoming in American Poetry Review, Electric Literature, Cincinnati Review, and other places; their essays are published in Teen Vogue, Autostraddle, and Blavity. KB is the author of How To Identify Yourself with a Wound (Kallisto Gaia Press, 2022), selected by ire’ne laura silva as winner of the 2021 Saguaro Poetry Prize. KB has received Pushcart Prize and Best of the Net nominations, along with support from PEN America, Lambda Literary, The Watering Hole, and African American Leadership Institute - Austin, among others. Their cultural work spans six years. In that time, KB founded and led two nonprofits (Interfaces and Embrace Austin). They have also contributed to many initiatives such as Austin’s first LGBTQIA+ quality of life survey and inclusion of chosen names on the University of Texas at Austin diplomas. Currently, they are project lead for Winter Storm Project, an arts anthology inspired by the 2021 Texas winter storm. KB’s debut full-length poetry collection, Freedom House, is forthcoming from Deep Vellum in 2023. Currently, they are an Artivism Fellow with Broadway Advocacy Coalition. Follow them on twitter/instagram/tiktok at @earthtokb and subscribe to their sporadic opinions and updates through their newsletter Out of This World. They live in Austin, TX where they are working on new projects and trying their best.
February 09, 2022
Join Chris and Courtney of The Poetry Question as they sit down for a talk with Seema Reza about passions, process, pitfalls, and poetry! Seema Reza is the author of A Constellation of Half-Lives & When the World Breaks Open. Based in Maryland, she has led writing workshops within correctional facilities, military and civilian hospitals, elementary and secondary schools, and universities. She is the CEO of Community Building Art Works, a unique arts organization that encourages the use of the arts as a tool for narration, self-care and socialization among a military population struggling with emotional and physical injuries. Reza’s work with veterans is featured in the 2018 HBO documentary We Are Not Done Yet. She was awarded the Col John Gioia Patriot Award by the USO of Metropolitan Washington-Baltimore for her work with service members. An alumnus of Goddard College and VONA, she has had writing online and in print in McSweeney’s, The LA Review, The Feminist Wire, The Offing, and Entropy among others. Case studies from her work with military populations have appeared in Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder and Related Diseases in Combat Veterans. She has performed across the country at universities, theaters, festivals, bookstores, conferences, & one fine mattress shop.
February 07, 2022
Join Chris and Courtney of The Poetry Question in a sit down with Gabrielle Bates about passion, process, pitfalls, and poetry! Gabrielle Bates is a writer and visual artist originally from Birmingham, Alabama. Her debut collection of poems, JUDAS GOAT, is forthcoming from Tin House in 2023. Bates's work has appeared in the New Yorker, Poetry Magazine, Ploughshares, APR, Virginia Quarterly Review, New England Review, Gulf Coast, Mississippi Review, Black Warrior Review, the Best of the Net anthology, and BAX: Best American Experimental Writing, among other journals and anthologies, and her poetry comics have been featured internationally in a variety of exhibitions, festivals, and conferences. Formerly the managing editor of the Seattle Review and a contributing editor for Poetry Northwest, Gabrielle currently serves as the Social Media Manager of Open Books: A Poem Emporium, a contributing editor for Bull City Press, and a University of Washington teaching fellow. She also volunteers as a poetry mentor through the Adroit teen mentorship program and teaches occasionally as a spotlight author through Seattle's Writers in the Schools (WITS). With Luther Hughes and Dujie Tahat, she co-hosts the podcast The Poet Salon, where poets talk over drinks.
February 02, 2022
Chris and Courtney sit down with Joel Leon, storyteller, father, poet, and recovering rapper, to talk about passions, process, pitfalls, and poetry! Joel L. Daniels, also known as Joel Leon, is a performer, author and story-teller who writes and tells stories for Black people. Born and raised in the Bronx, Joel specializes in moderating and leading conversations surrounding race, masculinity, mental health, creativity and the performing arts, with love at the center of his work and purpose. He is a F.H. LaGuardia High School of the Performing Arts alum, winner of the Bronx Council of the Arts BRIO Award in Poetry and is the author of "Book About Things I Will Tell My Daughter" and "God Wears Durags, Too", published by Bottlecap Press. His recent TED talk on healthy co-parenting has been viewed over 1M times, globally. He’s worked with The Gates Foundation, Nike, Twitter and HBO, and has been featured on the TODAY Show, Insider, the Columbia Journal, BBC News, Sirius XM, Forbes, Medium, Philadelphia Printworks, Blavity, and the Huffington Post. He lives in Brooklyn and is the father to Lilah and West.
December 29, 2021
Chris sits down with Darius Simpson, winner of the 2020 Ruth Lilly and Dorothy Sargent Rosenberg Poetry Fellowship, to talk about all things passions, process, pitfalls, and poetry! Darius Simpson is a writer, educator, performer, and skilled living room dancer from Akron, Ohio. He received his BA in Political Science from Eastern Michigan University and his MFA in Creative Writing-Poetry from Mills College. Darius was a recipient of the 2020 Ruth Lilly and Dorothy Sargent Rosenberg Poetry Fellowship. He hopes to inspire that feeling you get that makes you scrunch up your face after a good bite of homemade Mac N Cheese. Darius' poems have appeared in POETRY Magazine, The Adroit Journal, American Poetry Review, Tinderbox Poetry Journal, and others. Currently, he lives in Oakland, CA where, as a Teaching Artist, he partners with organizations to facilitate writing and performance workshops throughout the Bay Area. Darius believes in the dissolution of empire and the total liberation of all oppressed people by any means available. Free the People. Free the Land. Free All Political Prisoners.
December 27, 2021
Chris and Courtney sit down with poet, screenwriter, and essayist, Melissa Lozada-Oliva, to talk about passions, process, pitfalls, and poetry! Melissa Lozada-Oliva is a Guatelombian (Guatemalan-Colombian) American poet and screenwriter living in Brooklyn by way of Massachusetts. Their book peluda (Button Poetry 2017) explores the intersections of Latina identity, feminism, hair removal & what it means to belong. Their novel-in-verse Dreaming of You is about bringing Selena back to life through a seance & the disastrous consequences that follow & it’s coming out October 2021 on Astra House.
December 22, 2021
Chris and Courtney sit down with Kazim Ali, Editor/Founder of Nightboat Books, and Department Chair for Literature at UC San Diego, about all things passions, process, pitfalls, poetry... and Choose Your Own Adventure! KAZIM ALI was born in the United Kingdom and has lived transnationally in the United States, Canada, India, France, and the Middle East. His books encompass multiple genres, including the volumes of poetry Inquisition, Sky Ward, winner of the Ohioana Book Award in Poetry; The Far Mosque, winner of Alice James Books’ New England/New York Award; The Fortieth Day; All One’s Blue; and the cross-genre texts Bright Felon and Wind Instrument. His novels include the recently published The Secret Room: A String Quartet and among his books of essays are the hybrid memoir Silver Road: Essays, Maps & Calligraphies and Fasting for Ramadan: Notes from a Spiritual Practice. He is also an accomplished translator (of Marguerite Duras, Sohrab Sepehri, Ananda Devi, Mahmoud Chokrollahi and others) and an editor of several anthologies and books of criticism. After a career in public policy and organizing, Ali taught at various colleges and universities, including Oberlin College, Davidson College, St. Mary's College of California, and Naropa University. He is currently a Professor of Literature at the University of California, San Diego. His newest books are a volume of three long poems entitled The Voice of Sheila Chandra and a memoir of his Canadian childhood, Northern Light.
December 20, 2021
Chris sits down for a one-on-one with Reagan Myers, author of Afterwards (Button Poetry), to talk about passions, process, pitfalls, poetry... and YA lit! Reagan Myers Instagram @reagancmyers | Facebook @reagancmyers | Twitter @reagancmyers Reagan is the youngest Grand Slam champion to ever come out of Nebraska, and was the first woman to hold the title in seven years. She’s been to two National Poetry Slams as a member of the Omaha team, founded and represented the University of Nebraska-Lincoln at the College Unions Poetry Slam Invitational for two years, and was the Woman of the World Poetry Slam Nebraska rep for 2016, in addition to being a member of different teams for regional competitions. You can see her work on Button Poetry, which has accumulated over 2.5 million views, and has also been written about in The Huffington Post, Bustle, and Everyday Feminism. She is currently working on her Masters degree in composition and rhetoric at the University of Nebraska. Check out The Poetry Question
December 15, 2021
CHARLES K. CARTER
Chris and Courtney sit down with Charles K. Carter, author of Salem Revisited (WordTech Poetry), to talk about passions, process, pitfalls, and poetry! Charles K. Carter is a queer poet and educator from Iowa. He shares his home with his artist husband and their spoiled pets. He enjoys film, yoga, and live music. Melissa Etheridge is his ultimate obsession. Carter has an MA in creative writing with a poetry concentration from Southern New Hampshire University and an MFA in writing from Lindenwood University. He is a volunteer video curator for Button Poetry. His poems have been featured in several literary journals. Carter is the author of the chapbooks Chasing Sunshine (Lazy Adventurer Publishing), Splinters (Kelsay Books), and Salem Revisited (WordTech Editions). He collaborated on a short illustrated collection of haikus entitled Safety-Pinned Hearts with his husband, Brandon Carter, which was released by Alien Buddha Press. His first full-length collection will be released in 2022.
December 13, 2021
Chris sits down with Alan Chazaro, author of Piñata Theory and This Isn't a Frank Ocean Cover Album (Black Lawrence Press), to talk about passions, process, pitfalls, and poetry! Alan Chazaro's Website Bio: I write about things. After 10 years working as a public high school teacher in Louisiana, Massachusetts, and California, I decided to pursue my creative interests more seriously and have been living as a freelancer who travels when I can to enjoy cultures around the world. I'm a San Francisco Bay Area local with Mexican dual-citizenship, existing between both countries as I continue to write, edit, teach, and grow. In 2018, I graduated with my MFA in Creative Writing from the University of San Francisco where I was a Lawrence Ferlinghetti Poetry Fellow, which is awarded to a writer “whose work embodies a concern for social justice and freedom of expression.” Previously, I attended Foothill Community College, and later UC Berkeley, where I participated in June Jordan's Poetry for the People program. I also picked up some game from Patricia Smith, among others, at the Voices Of Our Nations. My first poetry collection, This Is Not a Frank Ocean Cover Album, was the winner of the 2018 Black River Chapbook Competition and my second, Piñata Theory, was awarded the 2018 Hudson Prize. They are both available with Black Lawrence Press. Currently, I'm working as an adjunct professor at the University of San Francisco, managing an online basketball blog, HeadFake, moonlighting as a contributing writer at KQED and SFGATE, and just asking questions wherever I go. Shout out my Oakland School for the Arts students who drew portraits of me so I don't ever need to take an author photo. You can see what I'm currently thinking about here. _________________________- Check out The Poetry Question
December 08, 2021
Courtney and Chris sit down with Hannah Cohen, author of Year of the Scapegoat (coming Spring of '22 from Glass Poetry), to talk about passions, process, pitfalls, and poetry! Hannah Cohen resides in Virginia with her two cats. She's a graduate of the Queens University of Charlotte MFA program. She is the author of two poetry chapbooks: YEAR OF THE SCAPEGOAT (Glass Poetry Press, 2022) and BAD ANATOMY (2018). Hannah is one of the co-editors of the online literary journal Cotton Xenomorph. Publications include Qu Lit Mag, The Offing, The Rumpus, Cherry Tree, Entropy, Drunk Monkeys, Glass: A Journal of Poetry and others. She was a Best of the Net 2018 finalist and a Pushcart Prize nominee. She previously served as contributing editor for Platypus Press. She is currently writing too many things: a novel, an essay collection, and 45000 Microsoft Word half-poems all with file names like "blurgh.docx"
December 06, 2021
Chris sits down with Patrick Roche, author of A Socially Acceptable Breakdown (Button Poetry), for a one-on-one conversation about passions, process, pitfalls, and poetry! Patrick Roche (he/him) is an award-winning poet, performer, mental health advocate, and Carly Rae Jepsen enthusiast from New Jersey. Videos of Patrick’s work have amassed over 9.5 million views on YouTube, making him one of the most popular spoken word poets. Patrick has competed or been featured at multiple national and international competitions and festivals, including placing 3rd in the world at the 2016 Individual World Poetry Slam, 2nd at the 2017 Capturing Fire national queer slam, 9th at the 2017 National Poetry Slam as part of the Bowery Slam Team, and 3rd at the 2014 College Unions Poetry Slam Invitational (CUPSI, the national collegiate slam) representing Princeton University. Patrick serves nationally as an ambassador for the JED Foundation, promoting mental and emotional health, suicide prevention, and substance abuse awareness. In recognition of his work as a touring speaker and performer, Patrick was named the 2020 Spoken Word Artist of the Year by APCA (the Association for the Promotion of Campus Activities), and he has featured at numerous conferences and conventions including the national conferences for both APCA and NACA (the National Association for Campus Activities). His solo stage show debuted in 2020 and was featured on BroadwayWorld. It was then selected for Dixon Place’s HOT! Festival, the longest-running festival of its kind celebrating LGBTQ theater and art. Patrick is the author of the full-length poetry collection, A Socially Acceptable Breakdown (Button Poetry, 2021). He has also written two chapbooks: Wait 30 Minutes (self-published, 2015) and An Exercise in Necromancy, winner of Bowery Poetry Club’s inaugural chapbook competition (Bowery Poetry/The Operating System, 2017). His work has appeared in or been published by Button Poetry, UpWorthy, Buzzfeed, The Huffington Post, NBC LX, MSN, Beech Street Review, Gal Pals Present, Freezeray Press, Voicemail Poems, and his mom’s fridge. He has shared stages with Darryl “DMC” McDaniels of RUN DMC, Pitch Perfect star Brittany Snow, Everybody Hates Chris and The Walking Dead star Tyler James Williams, and Olympic Gold Medalist Chamique Holdsclaw, among others. His work explores mental health, grief, sexuality, body image, disordered eating, family, memory, love, joy, pop culture, and everything in between. Patrick is a 2014 graduate of Princeton University, where he studied Classics (specifically Latin and Greek poetry) and Education. He loves his dog very much.
December 01, 2021
Chris and Courtney sit down with Ashley Elizabeth, author of You Were Supposed to be a Friend (Nightengale & Sparrow), for a conversation about passions, process, pitfalls, and poetry! Ashley Elizabeth (she/her) is a writing consultant, teacher, and poet. Her works have appeared in SWWIM, Rigorous, and Kahini Quarterly, among others. Her chapbook, you were supposed to be a friend, is available from Nightingale & Sparrow. When Ashley isn’t serving as assistant editor at Sundress Publications or working as a member of the Estuary Collective, she habitually posts on Twitter and Instagram (@ae_thepoet). She lives in Baltimore, MD with her partner and their cat. The Poetry Question Website The Poetry Question Merchandise
November 29, 2021
Chris sits down for a one-on-one conversation with Taylor Byas, author of Bloodwarm (Variant Lit), for a conversation about passions, process, pitfalls, and poetry! Taylor Byas is a Black poet and essayist. Originally from Chicago, she moved to Alabama for six years, where she received both her Bachelor’s degree in English and her Master’s degree in English (Creative Writing concentration) from the University of Alabama at Birmingham. Taylor currently lives in Cincinnati, Ohio where she is a third year PhD student and Albert C. Yates Scholar at the University of Cincinnati studying poetry. She is also an Assistant Features Editor for The Rumpus. She has received five Pushcart and six Best of the Net nominations, and has won a Best Microfiction Award. She is also the 1st Place Winner of the 2020 Poetry Super Highway Contest, the 2020 Frontier Poetry Award for New Poets, the 2021 Adrienne Rich Poetry Award, a finalist for the 2020 Frontier OPEN Prize, and an Honorable Mention for the 2021 Ninth Letter Literary Award in Poetry. Her chapbook, BLOODWARM, is out now from Variant Lit (2021). Her debut full-length poetry collection, I Done Clicked My Heels Three Times, is forthcoming from Soft Skull Press in the Spring of 2023. She is represented by Rena Rossner of The Deborah Harris Agency. The Poetry Question Website The Poetry Question Merchandise
November 24, 2021
DeMISTY D. BELLINGER
Join Courtney and Chris Margolin for a sit down with DeMisty D. Bellinger, author of Peculiar Heritage (Mason Jar Press), for a conversation about passions, process, pitfalls, and poetry! DeMisty D. Bellinger is the author of the poetry collections Rubbing Elbows (Finishing Line Press, 2017) and Peculiar Heritage (Mason Jar Press, 2021), and the forthcoming novel New to Liberty (Unnamed Press, 2022). A graduate of the MFA program at Southampton College and the PhD program at the University of Nebraska, DeMisty is now poetry editor with Porcupine Literary and with Malarkey Books, and she teaches creative writing at Fitchburg State University in Massachusetts. You can find her online at demistybellinger.com.
November 22, 2021
JOSE HERNANDEZ DIAZ
Chris sits down for a one-on-one conversation with Jose Hernandez Diaz on passions, process, pitfalls, and poetry! Jose Hernandez Diaz is a 2017 NEA Poetry Fellow. He is the author of a collection of prose poems: The Fire Eater (Texas Review Press, 2020). He holds degrees in English and Creative Writing from UC Berkeley and Antioch University Los Angeles. His work appears in The American Poetry Review, Cincinnati Review, Georgia Review, Huizache, Iowa Review, The Nation, Poetry, and in The Best American Nonrequired Reading. Currently, he is an Editor for Frontier and Palette Poetry. The Poetry Question Website The Poetry Question Merchandise
November 17, 2021
Courtney & Chris Margolin sit down with Rita Mookerjee of Honey Literary to discuss all things passions, process, pitfalls, and poetry! Rita Mookerjee is an Assistant Teaching Professor in the Women's and Gender Studies Program at Iowa State University. Her research interests include postcolonial women's literature, food studies, and queer theory. She holds a PhD in Literature from Florida State University. In 2019-2020, she was a Fulbright Fellow to Jamaica. Her critical work has been featured in the Routledge Companion of Literature and Food, the Bloomsbury Handbook to Literary and Cultural Theory, and the Bloomsbury Handbook of Twenty-First Century Feminist Theory. Her poetry is featured in Juked, Aaduna, New Orleans Review, Sinister Wisdom, and the Baltimore Review. She is the author of the chapbook Becoming the Bronze Idol (Bone & Ink Press, 2019). Currently, Rita is the Assistant Poetry Editor of Split Lip Magazine and a poetry staff reader for [PANK]. She is the Poetry Editor and Sex, Kink, and the Erotic Editor for Honey Literary. Find More on The Poetry Question. Purchase merchandise at the TPQ Store.
November 15, 2021
Chris Margolin sits down one-on-one with Ariana Brown for a conversation about passions, process, pitfalls, and poetry! ARIANA BROWN is a Black Mexican American poet with ten years of experience writing, performing, and teaching poetry. She offers a list of services for college events, poetry slams, and local organizations. Her work focuses on Black relationality, queer kinship, and imagining a world where Black girls are free. She is currently on tour with Alan Pelaez Lopez as part of the We Are Owed. Tour in fall 2021. Click here to book Ariana for an artist talk, writing workshop, or poetry performance. **Please excuse any audio issues on this episode, we were trying a different setup for it, and it didn't work as well as we wanted. The Poetry Question Website The Poetry Question Merchandise
November 10, 2021
Courtney and Chris Margolin sit down with Chen Chen for a conversation about passions, process, pitfalls, and Poetry. They might also talk about Russian literature, Buffy, and the horrors of getting sucked down a mall escalator. This is quite the conversation! 陳琛 / Chen Chen’s second book of poetry, Your Emergency Contact Has Experienced an Emergency, is forthcoming from BOA Editions in Sept. 2022. His debut, When I Grow Up I Want to Be a List of Further Possibilities (BOA Editions, 2017), was longlisted for the National Book Award and won the Thom Gunn Award, among other honors. In 2019 Bloodaxe Books published the UK edition. Chen is also the author of four chapbooks and the forthcoming book of essays, In Cahoots with the Rabbit God (Noemi Press, 2023). His work appears/is forthcoming in many publications, including Poem-a-Day and three editions of The Best American Poetry (2015, 2019, & 2021). He has received two Pushcart Prizes and fellowships from Kundiman and the National Endowment for the Arts. He teaches at Brandeis University as the Jacob Ziskind Poet-in-Residence and serves on the poetry faculty for the low-residency MFA programs at New England College and Stonecoast. With a brilliant team, he edits the journal, Underblong. With Gudetama the lazy egg, he edits the lickety~split. He lives in Waltham, MA with his partner, Jeff Gilbert and their pug, Mr. Rupert Giles. **Correction... it was not Courtney's Aunt, but a friend of the family. :) Find more about The Poetry Question on their website. Purchase TPQ20 and The Poetry Question Merchandise HERE.
November 08, 2021
Courtney and Chris sit down with Dare Williams for a conversation about passions, process, pitfalls, and poetry! Dare Williams: A 2019 PEN America Emerging Voices Fellow, Dare Williams is a Queer HIV-positive poet, artist, rooted in Southern California. He has received fellowships from John Ashbury Home School and The Frost Place. He is a co-producer of the reading series Word of Mouth which raises money for communities facing food and nutrition inequities and was the co-curator of the WeHo Reads Literature Festival 2021. Dare’s poetry has been nominated for a Pushcart Prize, Best of the Net and Best American Poets 2021. His work has been anthologized in Redshift 5 by Arroyo Secco Press and is featured in THRUSH, The Shore, Exposition Review, Cultural Weekly, Bending Genres, and is forthcoming in Altadena Review and elsewhere. He is at work on his debut poetry collection.
November 03, 2021
Chris and Courtney sit down with Deesha Philyaw to talk about passions, process, pitfalls, and poetry! Deesha Philyaw’s debut short story collection, The Secret Lives of Church Ladies, won the 2021 PEN/Faulkner Award for Fiction, the 2020/2021 Story Prize, and the 2020 LA Times Book Prize: The Art Seidenbaum Award for First Fiction and was a finalist for the 2020 National Book Award for Fiction. The Secret Lives of Church Ladies focuses on Black women, sex, and the Black church, and is being adapted for television by HBO Max with Tessa Thompson executive producing. Deesha is also a Kimbilio Fiction Fellow and will be the 2022-2023 John and Renée Grisham Writer-in-Residence at the University of Mississippi. Please Rate, Review, Share, and Subscribe! Find out more on The Poetry Question
November 01, 2021
Chris sits down for a one-on-one conversation with Sarah Kersey about passions, process, pitfalls, and Poetry! Sarah Kersey is a poet and x-ray tech from New Jersey. Her work has appeared, or is forthcoming, in The Hellebore, Mortar Magazine, Ghost City Review, The Harpoon Review, and elsewhere. She is an Associate Editor of South Florida Poetry Journal. She tweets @sk__poet.
October 27, 2021
Chris and Courtney sit down with Denzel Scott to discuss passions, process, pitfalls, and poetry! Denzel Xavier Scott earned his BA in English from the University of Chicago and received his Writing MFA at Savannah College of Art and Design (SCAD) in his hometown of Savannah, GA. His works appear in Spillway, Decomp, Euphony Journal, and Blacklight Magazine of the University of Chicago, Bombay Gin literary magazine of Naropa University, the Missing Slate literary magazine, Apeiron Review, based out of Philadelphia, the Gambler Mag, based out of New Orleans, Kaaterskill Basin Literary Journal, SLAB magazine of Slippery Rock University and, Linden Avenue. He has a forthcoming publication in Rattle and the Louisville Review. Denzel Scott is a past recipient of the University of Chicago’s prestigious Summer Arts Council Fellowship Grant. In September 2018, he became one of the winners of Writer Relief’s Peter K Hixson Memorial Prize. Semi-Finalist for Cave Canem Find him on Twitter @denzelscott. Chris L. Butler's BLERD was mentioned as a favorite of Scott's. Find out more about The Poetry Question HERE.
October 25, 2021
Chris sits solo with Todd Dillard to discuss passions, process, pitfalls, and poetry! Todd Dillard grew up in Houston, Texas, completing his undergraduate degree at the University of Houston with a concentration in creative writing and poetry. From there, he moved to New York to study in the creative writing program at Sarah Lawrence College, where he received his MFA in poetry in 2008. After living for a few years in Brooklyn and the Bronx, Todd moved to Philadelphia with his wife to start a family. He’s now the father of a wonderful daughter, and works as a writer and editor for a teaching hospital. Todd’s work has appeared in numerous publications, including Best New Poets, McSweeney’s Internet Tendencies, Electric Literature, Nimrod, Superstition Review, and Split Lip Magazine. His work was selected as a finalist for the 2018 “Best Small Fictions” anthology, and has been nominated numerous times for the “Best of the Net” and the Pushcart anthologies. He is a recipient of the Birdwhistle Poetry Prize. His debut collection “Ways We Vanish” was released in 2020 from Okay Donkey Press. Visit The Poetry Question at HTTP://www.thepoetryquestion.com
October 20, 2021
Courtney and Chris sit down with George Abraham, author of Birthright (Button Poetry), to talk about passions, process, pitfalls, and poetry! George Abraham is a Palestinian American poet and writer from Jacksonville, FL. Their debut poetry collection Birthright (Button Poetry, 2020) won the Arab American Book Award and the Big Other Book Award in Poetry, was a finalist for the Lambda Literary Award in Bisexual Poetry, and was named on Best of 2020 lists with The Asian American Writers' Workshop and The New Arab. He is also the author of the chapbooks al youm (The Atlas Review, 2017), and the specimen's apology (Sibling Rivalry Press, 2019). He is a board member for the Radius of Arab American Writers (RAWI), a recipient of fellowships from Kundiman, The Arab American National Museum, The Boston Foundation, and the Poetry Foundation, a winner of the 2018 Cosmonauts Avenue Poetry Prize selected by Tommy Pico, and a recipient of the "Best Poet" title from the 2017 College Union Poetry Slam International. Their writing has appeared in The Nation, The American Poetry Review, Guernica, The Baffler, The Paris Review, The Missouri Review, West Branch, Mizna, and anthologies such as Nepantla, Bettering American Poetry, and Beyond Memory: an Anthology of Arab American Creative Nonfiction. A graduate of Swarthmore College and Harvard University, and affiliated faculty member at Emerson College, Abraham is currently based in Chicago, IL, where he is a Litowitz MFA+MA Candidate in Poetry at Northwestern University.
October 18, 2021
Chris sits down for a one-on-one with Elizabeth Horan. Elisabeth Horan is a poet, mother, and small press publisher living in the wilds of Vermont. She is the author of numerous poetry chapbooks and collections, and the Editor-In-Chief of Animal Heart Press. Elisabeth is passionate about discovering new voices and mentoring emerging poets. She is also a fierce advocate for those impacted by mental illness.
October 13, 2021
Chris and Courtney sit down with Danez Smith to talk about Passion, Process, Pitfalls, and Poetry! Danez Smith is a Black, Queer, Poz writer & performer from St. Paul, MN. Danez is the author of “Homie” (Graywolf Press, 2020), "Don’t Call Us Dead" (Graywolf Press, 2017), winner of the Forward Prize for Best Collection, the Midwest Booksellers Choice Award, and a finalist for the National Book Award, and "[insert] boy" (YesYes Books, 2014), winner of the Kate Tufts Discovery Award and the Lambda Literary Award for Gay Poetry. They are the recipient of fellowships from the Poetry Foundation, the McKnight Foundation, the Montalvo Arts Center, Cave Canem, and the National Endowment for the Arts. Danez's work has been featured widely including on Buzzfeed, The New York Times, PBS NewsHour, Best American Poetry, Poetry Magazine, and on the Late Show with Stephen Colbert. Danez has been featured as part of Forbes’ annual 30 Under 30 list and is the winner of a Pushcart Prize. They are a member of the Dark Noise Collective and is the co-host of VS with Franny Choi, a podcast sponsored by the Poetry Foundation and Postloudness.
October 11, 2021
Courtney sits down with the legendary Ebony Stewart for a special one-on-one edition of TPQ20 Ebony Stewart is an international touring poet and performance artist. Her work speaks to the black experience, with emphasis on gender, sexuality, womanhood, and race, with the hopes to be relatable, remove shame, heal minds, encourage dialogue, and inspire folks in marginalized communities. As one of the most decorated poets in Texas, Ebony is a respected coach & mentor, one of the top touring poets in the country, and a Woman of the World Poetry Slam Champion. The Sexual Health activist and former Sexual Health Educator is also pursuing a license as a Clinician Therapist. As a playwright, Ebony’s one-woman shows, Hunger and Ocean, have received B. Iden Payne Awards & the David Mark Cohen New Play Award. She is the author of Love Letters to Balled Fists and Home.Girl.Hood. Her work has been featured in For Harriet, AfroPunk, Teen Vogue, and The Texas Observer. The only poet to perform at the 2018 Seattle Pride Festival before 200,000 people, was Ebony Stewart. She is, #thestoryoftheblackgirlwinning Poets/Writers mentioned: Ariana Brown, Janae Johnson, Ayokunle Falomo & Suzi Q Smith
October 06, 2021
SAM HERSCHEL WEIN
Courtney and Chris Margolin sit down with Sam Herschel Wein to talk about Passions, Process, Pitfalls, and Poetry. Sam Herschel Wein (pronouns: he/they) is a lollygagging plum of a poet who specializes in perpetual frolicking. They are an MFA candidate in poetry at the University of Tennessee-Knoxville. Their first chapbook, Fruit Mansion (Split Lip Press, 2017) was selected as the winner of the 2016 Turnbuckle Chapbook prize. Their second chapbook, GESUNDHEIT!, a collaboration with Chen Chen, is part of the 2019-2020 Glass Poetry Press series. He co-founded and edits the poetry journal Underblong. Recent poems can be found in Shenandoah, Sundog Lit, and The Adroit Journal, among others. They can be found in the cheese aisle of most stores, in the middle of a hug, or editing poems at your local coffee shop. Books referenced: Pet by Akwaeke Emezi; Detransition, Baby: A Novel by Torrey Peters Find Sam on Twitter Head to The Poetry Question to keep up with independent poetry!
October 04, 2021
TPQ20 SEASON 1 TRAILER
Welcome to the trailer for TPQ20 where we highlight a few of the names for season 1. Always remember to like, review, and subscribe!
September 13, 2021