FALL 2003

Friday, September 12, 2003 at 7:30 p.m.
Renee Gladman & Hung Q. Tu

Tisa Bryant on Renee Gladman’s new book, The Activist (Krupskaya, 2003): "A covert narrative operating as an event disguised as a report…. Is dreaming the medium for crossing the ambiguous borders of talk, responsibility, collectivity, solitude? Or does reading anatomize a phantom bridge that carries you over to an unmappable reality and calls you by your secret name? You may ask how Renee Gladman knows that this city of slippage is your city, how she holds you within it, riveted. And therein lies the magic of this book." Gladman’s previous works include Juice (Kelsey St. Press, 2001). Formerly the editor of Leroy Books and Clamour magazine, she returns to San Francisco for this reading.

Rodrigo Toscano on Hung Q. Tu’s new book, Structures of Feeling (Krupskaya, 2003): "[His] poetic modules are not ‘pieces’ in the traditional sense—that is, thematically staged, subjectively actored and assumedly audienced, they are more like an intelligent arraying of graffiti that you’d run into in a modern city’s sub-throughway, perhaps a bit run-down, but with a shiny glass building across the street—that is, a city intra-imperialized in every way, its complicit fractals, its bio-bit patois scrawled all about…. Here’s not (in the web sense) a ‘content rich’ pixelscape of vain worderies, but rather, the very packets of that packet-switching on the broadband of globalist ideology." Also the author of Verisimilitude (Atelos, 2000), Tu joins us from San Diego.

Friday, September 26, 2003 at 7:30 p.m.
Yedda Morrison & Kim Rosenfield

Sianne Ngai on Yedda Morrison’s first full-length collection, Crop (Kelsey St. Press, 2003): "From insecticide to plastic heels, no one has explored the disturbing intimacies between persons and things that arise in a system of exploited labor with as much insight…. Addressed to a world in which everything is brutally functionalized (picked, pumped, husked, inserted, breasted)…, her poetry unflinchingly confronts the violence behind the production of the sweet." Morrison co-edits Tripwire and co-curated our interdisciplinary Crosstown Traffic series for SPT; her previous works include The Marriage of the Well-Built Head (Double Lucy, 1998) and Shed (a+bend, 2000). Her photography has shown at Southern Exposure and New Langton Arts. A California native, she joins us from Oakland.

David Buuck on Kim Rosenfield’s first full-length collection, Good Morning— Midnight— (Roof Books, 2001). "Here feminist theory simultaneously picks apart a feast of fashion and (gendered) self-help discourse while taking delight in the festivities…. A carnivalesque aesthetic…combines a strong ear for the pure pop of advertising lingo and a surgeon's touch when it comes to cut'n'pasting. She avoids easy moralizing over consumerism and media, implicating our own appetites within the omnipresent public discourse of commodity aesthetics." Rosenfield co-edited Object magazine during the 90s; previous works include Rx, Cool Clean Chemistry (Leave Books, 1994) and a perfume, Trama. Don’t miss her The Truth Interview (with Brian Kim Stefans; see arras.net/truth_interview). She joins us from NYC.

Friday, October 10, 2003 at 7:30 p.m.
Brenda Coultas & Brian Strang

Lisa Jarnot calls Brenda Coultas "the supreme weaver of tender weird tales for a melancholy democracy. Her rural-urban-lyric-documentary of the human condition is more than astute and more than compelling-think of her as the new breed of great American poet." And Rain Taxi says of Coultas’ new book, A Handmade Museum (Coffee House Press, 2003): "[Her] poems sometimes seem to function as an extension of the observational activities by which neighborhoods regulate themselves; in her descriptions of encounters with people on the street and objects found in dumpsters, she preserves the naturally elegant social organization of the Bowery in its original chaos…". Coultas’ previous works include A Summer Newsreel (2nd Story Books, 1999). She joins us from NYC.

Aaron Shurin says Brian Strang’s first full-length book, Incretion (Spuyten Duyvil, 2003), "maps a post-apocalyptic future which is the present; in other words, our mortal occasion. There's lament - a dirge that lacks bitterness because it loves what is lost - and an elegiac language of the daily. But there's scariness, too - the tension of a noir narrative emptying itself of details, places, persons, placements, that have the ring of familiarity: our own necropolis. This is not a pretty book, as is true of many honest mirrors, but an imperative one." Strang teaches at San Francisco State, is co-editor of 26 magazine; previous works include movement of avenues in rows (a+bend) and machinations (Duration ebooks).

Friday, October 24, 2003 at 7:30 p.m.
kari edwards & Gail Scott

Anne Waldman says of kari edwards’ first novel, a day in the life of p. (Subpress, 2002): "Burroughsian, transgressive, exceedingly sharp and witty…startling and entertaining. What’s solid? This picaresque book is the dislocated yet substantive narration of the future." And Kevin Killian, who will introduce hir at SPT, says "[the] book is side-splittingly funny, when it wants to be, and tragic and mystic in turns from page to page. Like Marcel Duchamp’s Rrose Selavy, ‘p’ gives a new twist to our received ideas of heroism, kindness, and lucidity." edwards received a Bay Area Award in Literature from New Langton Arts in 2002; previous works include a diary of lies (Belladonna, 2002) and post/(pink) (Scarlet Press, 2001).

Gail Scott joins us in celebration of the US publication of her novel, My Paris, by Dalkey Archive. Eileen Myles says "[she] has redefined landscape to include all weather, inside and out, including sex and a female sexual vision--a vision of being that's pure animation, an action made up of all the tiny windows of information constantly opening and closing in the rhythm of the way we know a place in time, for instance Paris. Her Paris is pretty stunning art." Scott’s other novels are Heroine and Main Brides. She is a coeditor of Narrativity and her translation of Michael Delisle's The Sailor’s Disquiet was shortlisted for the prestigious Governor General's award in 2001. She joins us from Montreal and will be introduced by Robert Glück.

Cosponsored by the Poetry Center; held at Small Press Traffic.

Friday, November 7, 2003 at 7:30 p.m.
Anselm Berrigan & Margaret Christakos

Kevin Killian on Anselm Berrigan’s recent collection, Zero Star Hotel (Edge, 2002): "really something different, it gives you the passionate can't-put-it-down experience of reading a great novel, and technically it's so assured you don't even notice how he is producing all his effects. The hero of ‘Zero Star Hotel’ goes on a mythic quest; the story's told very simply, with lots of gritty detail and an attention to surfaces and realities…. I can't speak highly enough about ‘Zero Star Hotel’ but in the words of Paula Abdul, Anselm, you have raised the bar for all of us, you're my American idol now." Berrigan’s previous works include Integrity & Dramatic Life (Edge, 1999). He joins us from NYC.

Margaret Christakos’ recent collection, Excessive Love Prostheses (Coach House, 2002) has just been awarded top poetry honors in Canada’s 2003 ReLit awards. R.M. Vaughan says she’s "a writer’s writer, one of those jealously guarded things" and that this book "reminds us again and again that what we call love (oh, and hate, too) is a language – a curly, sometimes thorny shorthand of breathing spaces, double takes, blood rushes, musical marks in the air." Christakos is the former editor of MIX: The Magazine of Artist-Run Culture; her previous works include Wipe Under A Love (poetry, Mansfield Press, 2000) and Charisma (fiction, Pedlar Press, 2000). Also a teacher and mother, she joins us from Toronto.

Saturday, November 8, 2003, from 3-8 p.m.
Nine Lives – SPT’s 9th Annual Literary Soiree & Auction

click here for further info

Friday, November 14, 2003 at 7:30 p.m.
Xcp Magazine Benefit
with Mark Nowak & Wang Ping

Join us in celebrating and supporting one of the finest and most visionary magazines around, Xcp: Cross Cultural Poetics. Editor Mark Nowak’s multidisciplinary work includes publications in anthropology, poetry/poetics, cultural studies, and photography. He is the author of a poetry collection, Revenants, co-editor with Diane Glancy of the acclaimed anthology Visit Teepee Town: Native Writings After the Detours (both from Coffee House Press). Contributor Wang Ping is the author of a novel, Foreign Devil, a short story collection, American Visa, and a collection of poetry, Of Flesh & Spirit (Coffee House). Anne Waldman says "she explodes the safe boundaries of culture, gender, and female sexuality…[her] meditations reveal the incongruities between byzantine bureaucracy and the needs of a free spirit." They both join us from St. Paul.

Friday, November 21, 2003 at 7:30 p.m.
Mytili Jagannathan & Rodney Koeneke

Mytili Jagannathan was selected for a Pew Fellowship in 2002; her work has appeared in Xcp: Cross Cultural Poetics, Combo, Interlope, and Mirage; and is forthcoming in the anthology Cities of Chance: An Anthology of New Poetry from the United States and Brazil (Rattapallax). She joins us from Philadelphia in celebration of the publication of her first book by David Hadbawnik’s new press late this year. From her poem "Score"; "my hand deliberately//is that a safe space//is that our signatures intertwined."

K. Silem Mohammad on Rodney Koeneke’s first full-length collection, Rouge State (Pavement Saw, 2003): "Cannily an(a)esthet(ic)izing the misogynist and orientalist phantasms that are projected on the digital plateaux of its own prosodic bravado, this is how Naked Lunch might have turned out if it had been written by Robert Browning having a sex-change operation. There can be but one sordid bordello of this magnitude, and Koeneke has erected it squarely at the fissure where the simulacral Middle America of Pop Warner and bubble top vans collides with a paracolonial hallucination of Eastern inscrutability inhabited by five-dollar houris and hack oud players. These elegant verses have teeth." Koeneke’s one of our favorite San Franciscans.

All events are $5-10, sliding scale, and begin at 7:30, unless otherwise noted.
Unless otherwise noted, our events are free to SPT members, youth under 18, and CCAC faculty, staff, and students.
Unless otherwise noted, our events are presented in
Timken Lecture Hall
California College of Arts and Crafts
1111 Eighth Street, San Francisco (just off the intersection of 16th & Wisconsin)