2019 Reading Schedule

Thursday, March 28, 2019: SEMO Press Presents…

Mother Foucault’s Bookshop | 10pm | 523 SE Morrison St, Portland, OR 97214
(with Maureen Aitken, Jeffrey Condran, and Brad Aaron Modlin)
RSVP here!

Thursday, April 25, 2019: Word Thursdays

Bright Hill Press | 7pm | 94 Church St, Treadwell, NY 13846

A great week! :)

Glorious Veils of Diane, forthcoming from Carnegie Mellon University Press, was selected as one of five finalists for Omnidawn's 1st/2nd Book Prize!

A creative nonfiction piece, "Ghost Cams," was a finalist for London Magazine's essay prize!

The Poetry Review chose a line from one of my poems as their most recent issue’s tag-line!

Thank you to Phoebe Journal for publishing "Guess My Name"! Read it here!

Thank you to the Swarthmore College Bulletin for their feature on my chapbook No Mark Spiral and for publishing a new poem "Chess Game"! Read it here!

Thank you to Driftwood Press for publishing a poem from my RollerCoaster Tycoon book, "Erasure of Wikipedia Page on RollerCoaster Tycoon™"! Download the issue here!

I'm getting two books published!!!

I’ve been dreaming of this moment for years! When I got the call my car was stuck in a snowdrift in North Syracuse, Ariel was with me, and we both almost burst into tears, we were so happy:

Carnegie Mellon University Press will be publishing my book Glorious Veils of Diane! I’ve been reading their books since high school and I feel crazy honored! I feel especially thrilled because they want to see (and hopefully work with me on) future books!

Also! Southeast Missouri University Press will be publishing my book Inside Ball Lightning! The book was a two-time finalist for their contest, and I'm really grateful to them for now giving it a home!

With my whole floating heart I want to thank everyone who helped me, who offered their love and time and energy! Ariel Chu for being my first reader and amazing, talented partner and giving brilliant feedback on every draft I showed her. All my teachers, who kept expanding my ideas of what poetry could be, who sat with me for hours going over these manuscripts. All the journals that believed in these poems. My friends and cohort, for inspiring me with their talent and critique. My family, for never flagging in their support of my work.

I'm totally ecstatic and totally grateful to you all for all the myriad ways you have supported my life and work. With so much love, thank you!

A sweet new string of acceptances!

Over the past two weeks I’ve been thrilled to receive acceptances from a number of journals!

Blackbird, poems translated from Sophia Parnok

Bat City Review, poems translated from Sophia Parnok

Mid-American Review, poems from my manuscript Glorious Veils of Diane

Phoebe, a poem from my chapbook manuscript “Pink Dress / Dark Green Trees”

Big Muddy, poems from my manuscripts Inside Ball Lightning and Moss on Rollercoaster Tycoon

Thank you!

"This space is how much I love you"

Thank you so much to Trish Hopkinson for inviting me to write about No Mark Spiral for her blog, where this piece was originally posted:

When I was eight years old, my brother Mark, then four and a half, followed me everywhere.

We had a game where I would stand inside the yard of the play-house in the corner of our living room, and he would open the mailbox, and peer inside, shout (loud as if I wasn’t right there) into its milky dark tunnel, “I’m home!”

And there’d be a back flap of the mailbox I’d open and when I did that the light would pour in and he’d see my face and shout “I see you, let me in!”

And I’d put my face to the hole and block out all the light again. I’d say “I’m right here!”

And that’s how it would be—both of our small faces pressed into the open ends of the mailbox, close enough to feel the heat of and smell each other’s breath, both blocking out all light, unable to see each other, but oh so incredibly close…

He’d pull away from the mailbox and I’d see his face in the light, he’d say—“I’m coming in!”

And I’d jump over the playhouse’s pretend fence and hide behind it, then Mark would enter to the spot I had just been, and he’d say “I’m home, where are you?”

And I’d come around to the outside of the mailbox and look in. But then he’d say, “Stop running away, Jacob, I just wanna play with you.”

And I wouldn’t know what to say, so I’d run outside of our real house and he’d chase me but I’d be hiding in a bush and as he ran blinking into the sun I’d jump out and scare him and he’d start to cry and I’d say “please don’t cry, I love you.”


After our grandmother died a long month after a cancer diagnosis, Mark started to get terrified. Suddenly, everything, including himself, was mortal. He lay in bed, eight, and I sat beside him, eleven and a half, and he asked quivering questions to the ceiling, no light except for the occasional blue blinking of his computer’s power button:

“What does it mean to die?

“When will I die?

“When will you die?

“Where do we go when we die?

“Why do people have to die?”

And to all these I would answer, “That’s very, very far away, don’t think about it now.”

Then I’d go back to my own bed, walking through the hallway with my eyes closed, in case I saw her ghost. Some nights I would have nightmares.

The worst dream I had I was in Mark’s room with Mark, and he was asking those questions, and then her ghost appeared, suddenly, leaning over a lamp. I pointed to her, and Mark turned around, but he didn’t see her…


We were like turtles in the dark, wanting to swim up towards the moon’s shape on the surface of water. But we kept mistaking each other’s pale lit shell below us for the moon, and so we’d spiral back, and back.


Here is a poem from the collection, which I set to music: