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LIVE ON CROWDCAST: JACKIE WANG reads from her collection THE SUNFLOWER CAST A SPELL TO SAVE US FROM THE VOID with BRANDON SHIMODA

*Please note: this event will take place on Crowdcast. Register here to attend live or watch the replay. 

The Sunflower Cast A Spell To Save Us From The Void (Nightboat Books)

The poems in The Sunflower Cast A Spell To Save Us From The Void read like dispatches from the dream world, with Jackie Wang acting as our trusted comrade reporting across time and space. By sharing her personal index of dreams with its scenes of solidarity and resilience, interpersonal conflict and outlaw jouissance, Wang embodies historical trauma and communal memory. Here, the all-too-familiar interplay between crisis and resistance becomes first distorted, then clarified and refreshed. With a light touch and invigorating sense of humor, Wang illustrates the social dimension of dreams and their ability to inform and reshape the dreamer’s waking world with renewed energy and insight.

Jackie Wang is a poet, library rat, trauma monster, harpist, and Assistant Professor of Culture and Media Studies at The New School. She is the author of Carceral Capitalism, as well as the chapbooks Tiny Spelunker of the Oneiro-Womb and The Twitter Hive Mind Is Dreaming. When not writing poetry she researches race, surveillance technology, and the political economy of prisons and police.

Brandon Shimoda was born in the San Fernando Valley and lives in the Sonoran Desert. His recent books include The Grave on the Wall (City Lights), which received the PEN Open Book Award, and The Desert (The Song Cave). His next book, on the afterlife of Japanese American incarceration, received a Creative Nonfiction Grant from the Whiting Foundation, and is forthcoming from City Lights.

Praise for The Sunflower Cast A Spell To Save Us From The Void:

"Jackie Wang’s new book asks questions that rotate/fluoresce against a backdrop or foreground of ceremonial apprenticeship, like sunflowers or the memories of sunflowers. In this other world, “survivor trauma” is experienced by creatures and non-creatures alike. I was so moved by the mixtures of writing I encountered here: the “map” of a dream, but also the notebooks that “fill up,” not always in the English of waking time. “I want to write you without writing over you. I have something to tell you,” the speaker says, with the delicacy and directness of a sentence written directly on the skin. Kalan Sherrard’s illustrations echo this way of marking the page: a mode of companionship and witness in a book that did not end because it did not begin. Is this what it feels like to be a person?" - Bhanu Kapil

“Can a book parry catastrophe?” Jackie Wang (heliomancer, revelator, poet) asks, in a book that not only parries catastrophe, but climbs, through its eye, into its mind, into its fantasy even. From the blistering seat of that overwhelming perspective, Wang begins calling catastrophe back from storming and suffering itself onto others (community, friendships, the future), by counting and recounting, in the most irreproachably neon vocabulary, dreams, translations of dreams, which are, as reclamations of logic and improvements of life, scenarios that together manifest an alternative method of survival: “the sunflower book: It is code for love.” - Brandon Shimoda

"Jackie Wang’s The Sunflower Cast A Spell To Save Us From The Void is a gorgeous, ambitious, phantasmagoric lament for the better worlds our bodies tell us must be possible, every day, even when we’re numb with pain. It goes deeper into darkness — political darkness, the end of our days — than anything I’ve read in recent poetry. But the poems are also filled with shifting, glittering “I’s” and “you’s” that frame themselves for us then break their frames, repeatedly repeatedly moving between poetry and meditations on “poetry” before becoming beautiful poetry again. I felt myself get lost and found in their address. I hope you will, as well." - Chris Nealon

 

Event date: 
Thursday, March 11, 2021 - 6:00pm
Event address: 
1818 N Vermont Ave
Los Angeles, CA 90027
Staff Pick Badge
The Sunflower Cast a Spell to Save Us from the Void Cover Image
$16.95
Possibly out of print. Email or call to check availability and price.
ISBN: 9781643620367
Published: Nightboat Books - February 2nd, 2021

Staff Pick Badge
Carceral Capitalism (Semiotext(e) / Intervention Series #21) Cover Image
$14.95
ISBN: 9781635900026
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Semiotext(e) - February 23rd, 2018

The Grave on the Wall Cover Image
$16.95
ISBN: 9780872867901
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: City Lights Books - July 30th, 2019

The Desert Cover Image
$17.95
Possibly out of print. Email or call to check availability and price.
ISBN: 9780998829067
Published: Song Cave - September 1st, 2018

Evening Oracle Cover Image
$14.00
Possibly out of print. Email or call to check availability and price.
ISBN: 9780988713758
Published: Letter Machine Editions - October 1st, 2015

Portuguese Cover Image
$14.95
Possibly out of print. Email or call to check availability and price.
ISBN: 9780986181122
Published: Octopus Books - March 1st, 2013

The Girl Without Arms Cover Image
$14.95
Possibly out of print. Email or call to check availability and price.
ISBN: 9780984475230
Published: Black Ocean - February 7th, 2011