“What I appreciate about Ted Washington’s Bone Lyre is the universal themes. Love poems like “Lauren” put tears in my eyes with captivating words and rhythm. Haikus featuring nature and politics both eased and upset me with their truths. The Pruitt Igoe section composed lyrics and poems that I found to be wily and brazen, filled with comical expressions and relatable thoughts. Bone Lyre is an emotional read.”
— Georgianna Simmons
A Certain Serenity
“Anastasia DiFonzo takes readers on a journey filled with pain and promise, heartache and survival. In four parts, A Certain Serenity is both a portrait of devastation and a restorative balm for what remains over the book’s entire arc. Through fierce language and storytelling, DiFonzo’s words are like a battle cry echoed far beyond the pages of the chapbook itself.”
— Erica Abbott
Close to Something Beautiful
Lauren Villa’s sensuous debut is rife with playful and provocative language through which the poet explores sexuality and power dynamics. Refreshingly brazen, Villa’s poems create tension between toughness and tenderness, grit and romance, ambivalence and longing. Villa writes with confidence and curiosity, and her poems not only offer her readers “A bone to chew on,” but also create a vivid world that hangs in the balance between something beautiful and something dark and unyielding, something “tough as railroad tracks.”
— Elizabeth Hazen, author of Girls Like Us
The Hospice Bubble & Other Devastating Affirmations
In “The Hospice Bubble” talented writer Lizzie Wann is able to achieve that thing that a surprising number of writers don’t: she makes the personal accessible. Through prose that is as beautiful as it is gut-wrenching, her authenticity lets you see the singular person behind the poetry while the themes she addresses will speak to you directly in one way or another. A merging of individual story, relatability, and even social and political issues, with poetry as the medium, is what makes “The Hospice Bubble” a genuine standout.
Palabra: Open Mic captures the spirit and diversity of an actual open mic. A regular occurrence at La Bodega Gallery in the Barrio Logan neighborhood of San Diego, Palabra brings together poets and authors with stories to tell and beautiful ways to tell them. This book is a collection of those unique voices—some are funny, some are sad, some are both. But they are all raw and real. The talented poets who attend Palabra are honest and uninhibited when they stand to share their writing. And that realness, transcribed on the pages that make up Palabra: Open Mic, is what makes the book so inviting. The reader is suddenly there, sitting alongside everyone else, a part of the community.