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Prismatics: Larry Levis & Contemporary American Poetry (Diode Editions, 2020) is a collection of the full-length transcriptions of the extended interviews Gregory Donovan and Michele Poulos conducted with a group of America’s most notable poets—including two U.S. Poet Laureates—in making the documentary film A Late Style of Fire: Larry Levis, American Poet. These discussions cover not only their relationships with Levis and his poetry, but also more wide-ranging commentaries on a broad spectrum of American literary life. Here, they sit down with Kathleen Graber, author of new poetry collection The River Twice (Princeton University Press), winner of the UNT Rilke Prize.

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Updated: Apr 13

Jehanne Dubrow, author of American Samizdat, is a 2020 Eric Hoffer Montaigne Medal Finalist.










From the Eric Hoffer Awards website:

As the annual judging draws to a close, the Montaigne Medal finalists are announced prior to the Eric Hoffer Award grand prize. This small list of finalists is an honored distinction of its own and is announced publicly during the spring of each award year.

About the Author


Jehanne Dubrow is the author of six books of poetry, including most recently Dots & Dashes, winner of the Crab Orchard Series in Poetry Open Competition Award (Southern Illinois University Press, 2017). Her previous books are The Arranged Marriage (University of New Mexico Press, 2015), Red Army Red (Northwestern University Press, 2012), Stateside (Northwestern University Press, 2010), From the Fever-World (WWPH, 2010), and The Hardship Post (three candles press, 2009, Sundress Publications, 2013). She has co-edited two anthologies, The Book of Scented Things: 100 Contemporary Poems about Perfume (Literary House Press, 2016) and Still Life with Poem: Contemporary Natures Mortes in Verse (Literary House Press, 2014). Her first book of creative nonfiction, throughsmoke: an essay in notes, will be published by New Rivers Press in 2019. And her seventh poetry collection, American Samizdat, was one of the winners of the Diode Editions Book Contest and will be published in 2019. 

Jehanne’s poetry, nonfiction, and book reviews have appeared in Southern Review, Pleiades, The New York Times Magazine, Southwest Review, The New England Review, as well as on Poetry Daily, Verse Daily, and American Life in Poetry. She earned a B.A. in the “Great Books” from St. John’s College, an MFA from the University of Maryland, and a PhD from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. She has been a recipient of the Alice Fay Di Castagnola Award, the Adrienne Rich Award for Poetry, the Towson University Prize for Literature, an Individual Artist’s Award from the Maryland State Arts Council, a Walter E. Dakin Fellowship and a Howard Nemerov from the Sewanee Writers’ Conference, and a Sosland Foundation Fellowship from the Center for Advanced Holocaust Studies.

The daughter of American diplomats, Jehanne was born in Italy and grew up in Yugoslavia, Zaire, Poland, Belgium, Austria, and the United States. She lives in Denton with her Bedlington Terrier, Lola, and occasionally with her husband, Jeremy, who is a career military officer. Jehanne is an Associate Professor of creative writing at the University of North Texas.


About the Collection


Imagine a United States in which the First Amendment no longer exists. What would we say? What kind of poems would we read and write? In her seventh collection of poetry, American Samizdat, Jehanne Dubrow contemplates this possibility. Composed as series of terrified fragments, the book replicates the urgency of the Cold War-era, dissident writings once known as “samizdat,” underground publications that were forbidden by the state.

American Samizdat opens with an epigraph from the exiled Polish writer, Witold Gombrowicz: “This singing would be magnificent if the singers were not terrified of it and if one did not sense the tremor in their voices, which arouses pity…In the immense silence, our unconfessed, mute and gagged reality takes shape.” In her lyrical sequence, Dubrow speaks from the same mute landscape, a place of foreboding where people feel the conflicting impulses to resist authoritarianism and to remain passive.

Throughout American Samizdat, an anonymous speaker agonizes over questions of freedom, truth, and the resilience of democracy; she is an American version of Pan Cogito, Zbigniew Herbert’s poetic alter ego, who once critiqued an oppressive regime through the coded language of myth, fable, and fairytale. “Let me pretend already,” Dubrow writes, “the poem must be hidden // in a paper cup. To read /what’s written is to drink.” Set in a world of 24-hour news coverage, social media, and alternative facts, American Samizdat wonders what we've become and where we're going.

Updated: Apr 13

Dorothy Chan, author of Revenge of the Asian Woman, is a 2020 Eric Hoffer da Vinci Eye Award Finalist.











From the Eric Hoffer Awards website:

As the annual judging draws to a close, the da Vinci Eye finalists are announced prior to the Eric Hoffer Award grand prize. This small list of finalists is an honored distinction of its own and is announced publicly during the spring of each award year.

About the Author



Dorothy Chan is the author of Attack of the Fifty-Foot Centerfold (Spork Press, 2018) and the chapbook Chinatown Sonnets (New Delta Review, 2017). She was a 2014 finalist for the Ruth Lilly and Dorothy Sargent Rosenberg Poetry Fellowship, and her work has appeared or is forthcoming in Academy of American Poets, The Cincinnati Review, ​The Common, Diode Poetry Journal, Quarterly West, and elsewhere. Chan is the Editor of The Southeast Review. Visit her website at dorothypoetry.com.


About the Collection



“Who doesn’t think kissing is the greatest thing / in the world other than eating?” Revenge of the Asian Woman comes to life on a sexed-up soap opera / B-movie platter where passion and food and fantasy reign supreme: excess in the form of full odes and triple sonnets with towers of macarons and carnival desserts and Hong Kong street food on a skewer—and make it a double.

The East Asian girl boss takes her revenge on those who have fetishized her, looking great in gold booty shorts, because “If I played roller derby, my name would be Yellow Fever, / knocking out all those white boys from college / who used to whisper sweet nothings to me // in Mandarin.” She narrates her parents’ love story, the Chinese-American immigrant dream, her eastern zodiac fate, and her own sexual awakening. Revenge comes to life with scenes that mimic the movies: the speaker’s father as a young boy in Hong Kong running into a circus tent, winning a rice eating contest; young lovers in LA at 3 in the morning; and a forehead that is “too Godzilla, too Tarzan / too Wonder Woman”—scenes of a Chinese American experience, one in which the female speaker is “ready for takeoff,” while paying homage to her heritage: a grandmother who wants to buy her all the jade and gold in the world, a younger cousin who thinks she’s had a hundred boyfriends, and a grandfather who watches Hong Kong soaps with her.

Revenge of the Asian Woman is really about “it,” whether that “it” is the It girl, the It trend, or that ineffable feeling you have in “LA, 3 AM, the wind in your hair, down to your / breasts, braless under a low-v dress, / stroking the driver who’s your lover.” This collection presents plenty of longing for those fleeting moments, regardless if those moments are the speaker’s first sexual awakening in “Ode to the First Boy Who Made Me Feel It”;  the mother recounting her favorite childhood show about a family trying to reunite in “Triple Sonnet for Autoerotica”; or the nostalgia that’s presented with references to '80s teen films starring Andrew McCarthy, Liberace’s reign of Las Vegas, or “an appliance / that would deliver food from any part of the world—any part of the universe” from The Jetsons.

And with all this sex and food and longing, Revenge of the Asian Woman is above all, a fun romp. Let’s have a little Liberace-Las-Vegas-fun along the way with the glitz and glamour and kitsch of Japanese love hotels, B-movie starring Asian girls traveling to Mars, and total fantasy fulfillment as our dreams and nightmares come to life. The Asian woman conquers all, having her cake and eating it too—“Oh, cut that cake again.”

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