And double congrats and celebration of Raquel for winning the LAMBDA Award for their book lo terciario / the tertiary(Timeless Infinite Light, 2018)last night!!(look out for the new edition from Noemi Press forthcoming 2019 with an intro by Urayoán Noel and images by José Ortiz-Pagán)
"Raquel Salas Rivera’s new collection while they sleep (under the bed is another country) confronts the aftermath (duringmath?) of Hurricane Maria and the ongoing imperial violence of the U.S. in its territory/colony Puerto Rico. In English in the main body, and in Spanish in the footnotes, the book offers fragments, shards, from two parallel narratives—the view from the U.S., which passively observes the chaos from afar, where “64=4,645” and throwing paper towels is “a humanitarian gesture”; and the monster under the bed, the suppressed demonstration of pain and active survival in Puerto Rico, where there’s no use for health insurance because the hospitals still have no electricity. Critical, clear, crucial, while they sleep shows how America has made its bed and forces us to sleep in it."
–Kevin Chau, Lit Hub
Watch Raquel reading at their amazing launch event for while they sleep... at ICA Philadelphia!!!
you're interested in reviewing this book, adopting it for your class,
or inviting Raquel to read or give an interview, please let us know and
we'll be happy to help: email@example.com.
THANK YOU FOR SUPPORTING SMALL INDEPENDENT POETRY PRESSES.
Join Birds, LLC authors and friends Thursday, March 28th from 6:30 pm to 10 pm for a reading at1122 Gallery featuring:
Tommy Pico Raquel Salas Rivera Harmony Holiday Khadijah Queen Chase Berggrun Elisa Gabbert Su Hwang Monica McClure
Free and open to the public. There will be books, snacks & drinks on hand. 1122 Gallery is located at 1122 SE 88th Ave., Portland, OR 97216. Join or share via the Facebook event here.
Small Press Distribution 50th Anniversary Reading Party & Karaoke
Friday, March 29 at 6:30 PM, Birds, LLC will celebrate SPD’s 50th Anniversary with reading from Harmony Holiday and Raquel Salas Rivera followed by a karaoke party.
at McMenamins Kennedy School 5736 NE 33rd Ave, Portland, Oregon 97211
Fri, Mar 29 at BAKERY BUILDING / 2222 NE Oregon and at OUTLET PDX / 2500 NE Sandy
Birds, LLC authors will read at the No Fair / Fair reading:
Raquel Salas Rivera, 9:00pm Outlet PDX
Chase Berggurn, 9:20pm Outlet PDX
Tommy Pico, 9:30pm at Bakery Building
Harmony Holiday, 10:20pm at Bakery Building
Check out the full schedule here! Join or share on Facebook here.
Birds, LLC at AWP BOOKFAIR
Find Birds, LLC at AWP Conference Bookfair at Table: T5046 Thu-Sat, March 27–30, Portland, OR, Oregon Convention Center
Birds, LLC will be at NO FAIR/FAIR, a 2 day + 1 night literary festival celebrating small independent presses that will take place alongside the 2019 AWP Conference in Portland, OR. Fri-Sat, Mar 29-30, noon to 5PM at Bakery Building / 2222 NE Oregon.
We are thrilled to announce that Birds, LLC will publish Pricks in the Tapestry by Jameson Fitzpatrick in 2020.
Paul Mpagi Sepuya, Draping (_IMG6936), 2016, 21 x 24 inches, Edition of 5 + 2AP. Courtesy the Artist and team (gallery, inc.)
Jameson Fitzpatrick’s poems have appeared in The American Poetry Review, The New Yorker, Poetry, and elsewhere. A 2017 NYSCA/NYFA Fellow in Poetry, he is the author of the chapbooks Morrisroe: Erasures (89plus/LUMA Publications, 2014) and Mr. & (Indolent Books, 2018). He teaches at New York University. Pricks in the Tapestry is his first book.
Free and open to all, with music 🎵 by Marissa Johnson-Valenzuela, aka Dj Halfbreed, drinks, and Raquel's new book for sale with a book signing by the author. Join us from 7pm to 10pm at Institute of Contemporary Art at the University of Pennsylvania at 118 S. 36th Street.
(50% of sales will be donated directly to The Maria Fund, an organization dedicated to supporting emergency relief efforts as well as long-term organizing to build an equitable Puerto Rico.)
while they sleep (under the bed is another country) refuses to sweep up the shards of Hurricane María’s aftermath. Written in dialogic fragments and intersped with prose poems reflecting on the lasting impact of colonial trauma, it is arranged around the two different discourses. The bed on which America sleeps, and which America has made, is built on the fear that the nations it has oppressed will rise up against it, a monstrous shadow in a child’s nightmare. Written in English, while they sleep points to a imperialist American identity: the dormant body of the text. Answering in Spanish, under the bed is another country is the footnote, the monster under the bed, the colony: Puerto Rico.
50% of all pre-orders of Raquel's book will be donated directly to The Maria Fund,
an organization dedicated to supporting emergency relief efforts as
well as long-term organizing to build an equitable Puerto Rico.
while they sleep (under the bed is another country)
refuses to sweep up the shards of Hurricane María’s aftermath. Written
in dialogic fragments and intersped with prose poems reflecting on the
lasting impact of colonial trauma, it is arranged around the two
different discourses. The bed on which America sleeps, and which America
has made, is built on the fear that the nations it has oppressed will
rise up against it, a monstrous shadow in a child’s nightmare. Written
in English, while they sleep points to an imperialist American identity: the dormant body of the text. Answering in Spanish, under the bed is another country is the footnote, the monster under the bed, the colony: Puerto Rico.
Cover and interior art by Mariana Ramos Ortiz, and cover design by Zoe Norvell.
"Flatly, this is among the most moving books of crisis I have read in more than two decades by a frighteningly talented poet." —Samuel R. Delany, author of Dhalgren and Through the Valley of the Nest of Spiders
"Out of the impossible, writing the endless lines of the disaster, Raquel Salas Rivera has been talking to us all along." —Fred Moten, author of B Jenkins and The Feel Trio
Rivera, with stunning clarity, juxtaposes the hollow language of
witness with the language of survival, drowned out by the colonial
grammars of institutional violence, bureaucracy, and performative
politics." —Vanessa Angélica Villarreal, author of Beast Meridian
el huracán no solo impactó la isla sino también su lenguaje, y es con
esas palabras rotas que Raquel Salas Rivera ha escrito este libro
conmovedor y tan urgente.” —Frank Báez, autor de Postales
Raquel Salas Rivera es la poeta laureada de la ciudad de Filadelfia del 2018-19. Es la autora de while they sleep (under the bed is another country)
publicado por Birds, LLC en el 2019 y fue la recipiente inaugural del
Ambroggio Prize de la Academia de Poetas Americanos por su libro x/ex/exis. Cuenta con la publicación de seis plaquetas y cuatro poemarios adicionales. Su cuarto libro, lo terciario/the tertiary, fue finalista para el Premio Nacional del Libro del 2018 y fue seleccionado por Remezcla, Entropy, Literary Hub, mitú, Book Riot y Publishers Weekly como uno de los mejores poemarios del 2018. Del 2016-2018 fue co-editora de la revista literaria The Wanderer y co-editora de Puerto Rico en mi corazón,
una colección bilingüe de volantes de poetas puertorriqueños
contemporáneos. Es la recipiente de becas del Sundance Institute, el
Kimmel Center for Performing Arts, el Arizona Poetry Center y
CantoMundo. Ama y vive por Puerto Rico, Filadelfia y un mundo libre de la supremacía blanca.
Raquel Salas Rivera is the 2018-19 Poet Laureate of Philadelphia. They are the author of while they sleep (under the bed is another country) from Birds, LLC in 2019 and the inaugural recipient of the Ambroggio Prize from the Academy of American Poets for their book x/ex/exis. They are also the author of six chapbooks and four other full-length poetry books. Their fourth book, lo terciario/the tertiary, was on the 2018 National Book Award Longlist, and was selected by Remezcla, Entropy, Literary Hub, mitú, Book Riot, and Publishers Weekly as one of the best poetry books of 2018. From 2016-2018, they were co-editor of The Wanderer and co-editor of Puerto Rico en mi corazón, a
collection of bilingual broadsides of contemporary Puerto Rican poets.
They have received fellowships and residencies from the Sundance
Institute, the Kimmel Center for Performing Arts, the Arizona Poetry
Center, and CantoMundo. They love and live for Puerto Rico, Philadelphia, and a world free of white supremacy.
We are so happy to welcome these six brilliant authors to the Birds, LLC family: Harmony Holiday, Raquel Salas Rivera, Kinga Tóth, Precious Okoyomon, Jessica Q. Stark, and Kelin Loe!!!
Six vital new books, forthcoming in 2019-20!!!
A JAZZ FUNERAL FOR UNCLE TOM
Harmony Holiday is the author of four collections of poetry Negro League Baseball, Go Find Your Father/ A Famous Blues, and Hollywood Forever. She is also the founder of Mythscience, an arts collective devoted to cross-disciplinary work that honors and explores the function of the black body in the capitalist system, and demands new levels of autonomy and creative freedom. Harmony also runs and founded Afrosonics an archive of jazz and everyday diaspora poetics. She worked on the SOS, the selected poems of Amiri Baraka, transcribing all of his poetry recorded with jazz that had yet to be released in print and exists primarily on out-of-print records. Harmony studied rhetoric and at UC Berkeley and taught for the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theatre. She received her MFA from Columbia University and has received the Motherwell Prize from Fence Books, a Ruth Lilly Fellowship and a NYFA fellowship. She is currently working on a book of poems, as well as a separate book of lyric essays, both on Reparations and the body, and a biography of jazz singer Abbey Lincoln.
while they sleep (under the bed is another country)
print by Mariana Ramos Ortiz
Raquel Salas Rivera es la poeta laureada de la ciudad de Filadelfia del 2018-19. Es la primera recipiente del Ambroggio Prize de la Academia de Poetas Americanos (Academy of American Poets) por su libro en español con traducciones al inglés, x/ex/exis. Sus poemas han aparecido en revistas tales como la Revista del Instituto de Cultura Puertorriqueña, Apogee y McSweeney’s. Cuenta con la publicación de seis plaquetas y cuatro poemarios. Su último libro, lo terciario/the tertiary, enfrenta la ley PROMESA y es finalista para el Premio Nacional del Libro del 2018 (2018 National Book Award). Del 2016-2018 fue co-editora de la revista literaria The Wanderer y co-editora de Puerto Rico en mi corazón, una colección bilingüe de volantes de poetas puertorriqueños contemporáneos. Este verano trabajó junto con Raena Shirali, Kirwyn Sutherland y Ashley Davis, organizando un festival llamado We (Too) Are Philly e inspirado por el poema “I, Too” de Langston Hughes. Ama y vive por Puerto Rico, Filadelfia y un mundo libre de la supremacía blanca.
Raquel Salas Rivera is the 2018-19 Poet Laureate of Philadelphia. They are the first recipient of the Ambroggio Prize from the Academy of American Poets for their dual-language book x/ex/exis. Their work has appeared in journals such as the The Journal of the Institute of Puerto Rican Culture (Revista del Instituto de Cultura Puertorriqueña), Apogee, and McSweeney’s. They are the author of six chapbooks as well as four full-length poetry books. Their latest book, lo terciario/the tertiary, confronts the PROMESA bill and was recently on the 2018 National Book Award Longlist. From 2016-2018, they were co-editor of The Wanderer and co-editor of Puerto Rico en mi corazón, a collection of bilingual broadsides of contemporary Puerto Rican poets. This summer, they spent countless hours alongside Raena Shirali, Kirwyn Sutherland, and Ashley Davis organizing a festival called We (Too) Are Philly, inspired by Langston Hughes’ poem, “I, Too.” They love and live for Puerto Rico, Philadelphia, and a world free of white supremacy.
Kinga Tóth (poet, translator, illustrator, songwriter, performer; Hungary) has published six poetry books, all self-illustrated. Her visual poetry has been exhibited widely; she is the lead singer of the experimental band Tóth Kína Hegyfalu and is working on the visual/sound/poetry projects X and [Moonlight Faces], for which she received the 2017 Hazai Attila award.
BUT DID U DIE
Precious Okoyomon is a queer poet, artist, and performer living in New York. She is the author of “Ajebota” (Bottlecap Press, 2016). Her writing has been performed and exhibited at the Baltic Triennial in Lithuania, Exo Exo in Paris, and Moma ps1 in New York. Her writing has been published in numerous places including The Believer, Lambda Literary, and in Best American Experimental Writing 2019. She loves her sweet toy poodle rainbow and is a Leo that is very low key evil.
Jessica Q. Stark is a mixed-race Vietnamese American poet from Southern California who lives in Durham, North Carolina. She is a PhD Candidate in the English department at Duke University where she writes on the intersections between poetry and comics. Her poetry and/or illustrations have been published most recently by Glass Poetry Journal, The Operating System, Lute & Drum, Potluck, and others. Her poetry chapbook, The Liminal Parade, was selected by Dorothea Lasky for Heavy Feather Review's Double Take Poetry Prize in 2016. She writes an ongoing love poetry zine for the Internet called INNANET and curates the Little Corner Poetry Reading Series.
THE NEW FATE OF KELIN LOE
Kelin Loe is the author of These Are The Gloria Stories (Factory Hollow Press 2014) and the chapbook The Motorist (minutesBOOKS 2010). Her poetry and criticism can be found in jubilat, Sink Review, iO, Epiphany Magazine, Octopus Magazine and others. Her chapter "'Let's Listen With Our Feet': Animals (Non/Human, Neurodivergent), Vulnerability, and Haptic Rhetoricity" is included in the edited collection Rhetorical Animals: Boundaries of the Human in the Study of Persuasion (Lexington Books 2017). She earned her MFA (2012) from the University of Massachusetts Amherst, where she is currently a PhD Candidate in Rhetoric and Composition. She lives in Northampton, MA, with her husband and service dog.
Stay tuned for pre-sale and launch details!!!
And if you're interested in reviewing or teaching any of these books or inviting any of these authors to read near you or visit your class, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org!!!
Today is the official publication date for R E D, by Chase Berggrun!
“In Berggrun’s striking debut, a book-length erasure of Bram Stoker’s Dracula, that text becomes fertile soil for cultivating complex story of sexual awakening, domestic abuse, and liberation. Indeed, if flipping Stoker’s novel into a feminist narrative is a somewhat straightforward reversal, Berggrun’s poems convey that narrative’s stark circumstances with a poignancy and rage difficult to achieve. When the speaker asserts that “I am sane though proving it has been dreadful,” readers hear her triumphant reclamation of agency after abuse and recognize its resonance with the process of gender transition in a transphobic society.”
The latest issue of wildness includes a review of R E D by Terry Abrahams, who calls it, “Beautiful, poignant, inspiring, and, despite it all, optimistic in its narrator’s defiance and will to live, R E D is as assured of itself as it is assuring to read.”
If you’re in the NYC area, you can hear Chase read from R E D
Hear Chase read from that selection, as well as the editors discuss those poems in the “Darlings” episode of the Poetry Magazine Podcast.
"R E D is a thoroughly modern transfeminist work that recoups deep ontological value from a misogynist text. Berggrun pulls tropes out of their source, like storms, wolves, and blood, but reassigns each meaning and purpose. The characters generalize into pronouns: I, she, he. Out of the cacophony of voices in Dracula, a new and singular narrative perspective emerges: the poet, or a different Mina (or a Mina trying to parse the nebulous, existential threat of difference). The sumptuous language of the pulpy original fractures and reforms into striking verse. This book has fangs. Like creeping through winding tunnels under a castle, it explores the violence and glory of gender on both intellectual and bodily levels. It is a strange and wonderful feat to have harnessed this monster Dracula and rewritten its DNA. This is a major win for the publisher, the author, and poetry at large. Any other title vying for best book of the year has formidable competition."
Many congratulations to Tommy and all the incredibly talented Whiting Award winners!
Recipients clockwise from left; Weike Wang, Anne Boyer, Tommy Pico, Hansol Jung, Rickey Laurentiis, Esme Weijun Wang, Antoinette Nwandu, Patty Yumi Cottrell, Brontez Purnell and Nathan Alan Davis.
By Beowulf Sheehan.
The New York Times Style section featured an author profile of Tommy Pico and mentions his Birds, LLC book IRL. Check out the full article. IRL is now available in audiobook format from your favorite provider. Check out this one at Audible.
R E D excavates from Bram Stoker’s Dracula, through the process of erasure, an original narrative of violence, sexual abuse, power dynamics, vengeance, and feminist rage, and wrestles with the complexities of gender, transition, and monsterhood.
Chase Berggrun’s R E D is deathy goddy girly queer erasure supreme. They turn the “I,” that bossy mercurial pronoun, into a transcendent blade beyond confession. They take the broken thing of identity and endow it with the kind of agency that can only arise in the survivor, one who has seen madness only in what madness has already been done to them. Chase’s brilliant debut demands to be re[a]d with an exasperated, murderous clarity.
“I violate limitation” says the speaker in Chase Berggrun’s R E D and how can I help it, I love her to no end. This is a book that celebrates, no, reifies the power of erasure to usher in (re)creation. The gifts of transition. The gift of a body becoming “a determined echo hammering away.” How my own body needed these “hands full of sound.”
Erasing Bram Stoker’s Dracula all the way down to its psychoanalytic minimalia, Chase Berggrun unearths a narrative not only of gender transition, but of the uncanny political and metaphysical transitions entailed by the metamorphosis of individual into chorus as well. By the end of this adventure in appropriation as self-disclosure, we learn that the “mystery” was self all along: “A detail in a pool of blood / the body gathered in an awkward kink / I dress myself in easy anything.”
Chase Berggrun is a trans poet. They are the author of R E D, forthcoming from Birds, LLC. Their work has appeared or is forthcoming in the Lambda Literary Spotlight, Pinwheel, PEN Poetry Series, Sixth Finch, Diagram, The Offing, Beloit Poetry Journal, and elsewhere. They received their MFA from New York University. They are poetry editor at Big Lucks.