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AWP 2024: When the Old Names Fail Us

Friends & Poets, as you are preparing your schedules for AWP 2024, consider joining Maya Williams, Matt Miller, Lynn Melnick, Octavio Quintanilla, and I for our poetry craft and criticism panel....


WHEN THE OLD NAMES FAIL US




I promise you, this will be a rewarding experience. With depth and vulnerability, we will be reading our poems and covering a range of topics concerning trauma, disability, gender, anthropomorphism, sex work, and translanguaging. We will be opening our souls, sharing our scruples, and encouraging thoughtful conversation. We will be offering you, our audience, questions to ponder and poetry prompts to inspire your own creativity. We hope to see you there!


PANEL SYNOPSIS:

Language evolves. Words both gain and lose power with social movements, cultural expectations, and personal transformation. Sometimes vocabulary evades inspiring a search for expression to hold all our meanings. In this panel, four poets will consider the role of poetry in the process of naming and renaming as personal, social, and cultural evolution demands shifts in how we speak about ourselves and contemporary themes.


PANELIST BIOS:

Kimberly Ann Priest is the author of Slaughter the One Bird as well as three chapbooks, with books forthcoming from Texas Review Press & Unsolicited Press. An assistant professor at Michigan State University, her work has appeared in Beloit Poetry Journal, Copper Nickel, and Birmingham Poetry Review. Find her work at kimberlyannpriest.com.


Maya Williams (ey/they/she) is currently the seventh poet laureate of Portland, ME. Eir debut poetry collection Judas & Suicide (Game Over Books) is a New England Book Award finalist. They also have a second poetry collection, Refused a Second Date (Harbor Editions). Find her work at mayawilliamspoet.com.


Matt W. Miller is the author of Tender the River, The Wounded for the Water, Club Icarus, and Cameo Diner. A winner of the Pablo Neruda Prize, The Trifecta Poetry Prize, and fellowships from Stanford University and the Sewanee Writers Conference, he teaches and lives in coastal New Hampshire.


Lynn Melnick is the author of the memoir, I've Had to Think Up a Way to Survive: On Trauma, Persistence, and Dolly Parton (2022), as well as three poetry collections, Refusenik (2022), Landscape with Sex and Violence (2017), and If I Should Say I Have Hope (2012).


Octavio Quintanilla is the founder of the literary festival VersoFrontera & publisher of Alabrava Press. His poetry collection, The Book of Wounded Sparrows, is forthcoming from Texas Review Press. He teaches Literature and CW at Our Lady of the Lake University. IG: @writeroctavioquintanilla


For your convenience, find a full panel outline and panel transcript on the AWP website here: https://www.awpwriter.org/awp_conference/event_detail/24929


SAFE TRAVELS EVERYONE!!

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