'alchemy’s new materials'

Photo of Jamie Townsend (right) by Ivy Johnson.

Jamie Townsend’s debut collection of poetry, Shade, continuously turns for us a promise of utopia that is as perpetually deferred as it is exhausted. Much like a mixtape or a news ticker’s scrolling forecast of weather and stocks, Shade traverses contiguous anxieties about what capitalism renders immaterial and how optimism becomes militarized, with Townsend trailing who (or what) follows us from the streets into our throats, from our dreams into the law.

'silence isn't always a trick'

Photo of Thomas Devaney (right) by David Kelley.

Thomas Devaney’s dedication for Calamity Jane, “A Solo Opera for Jeanine Oleson,” situates Calamity Jane — famous gunslinger, sidekick of Wild Bill Hickok, and star in Buffalo Bill’s road show — more overtly in the realm of dramatic performance than in the realm of Western myth. Born Martha Jane Canary in 1852, orphaned young and left to raise her siblings, she became widely known as the character implied by her nickname, which she received while working as an army scout during campaigns against Native Americans (when she reportedly also began dressing like a man).

The visions and worlds of Hagiwara Sakutaro

Photo of Hagiwara Sakutaro (right) from Wikimedia Commons.

You may smash a fly but the fly’s “thing in itself” will not die. You’d simply have smashed the phenomenon called the fly. — Schopenhauer

Curiosity and rarity

Photo of Cynthia Cruz (right) by Steven Page.

The brain, a kaleidoscopic disco[1]

Poet in profile

The Year of the Ram is the year to celebrate the Black Sheep. Jenny Zhang is the New Girl fed up with the Old World crap sheet. Eschewing the coyness that makes the big wigs cream their pants, this Chatty Cathay takes her chances befriending the fierce whores, sodomites, and other forbidden scribes.[1]