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Archive for the ‘Augury Books’ Category

Detail of Le Sortie de l’opéra en l’an 2000, by Albert Robida. Courtesy of Public Domain Review

This coming Saturday, October 25th, Augury editor Kimberly Steele will be featured on the next P&W LIVE panel, held at the Library of Congress in Washington D.C.

Poets & Writers LIVE, developed by Poets & Writers magazine, aims to connect the independent literary community through a series of group panels featuring upcoming and established editors, publishers, and authors.

Other publishing companies represented will include Graywolf Press, Algonquin Books, New Directions, Black Balloon Publishing, Rose Metal Press, and Gival Press, as well as a featured reading by Charles D’Ambrosio.

Steele will be sharing her experiences as an editor of Augury Books at the Indie Editor Roundtable at 1:30. For more information about the day’s events, as well as P&W LIVE and how to register, head over to their site.

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Photo: Rachel Eliza Griffiths

Dear Lxxxx,

We script our lives on reaction rather than action, meaning our daily life is always in response to, or a reply to, a command or demand. The world uses us in that way—we are the backsided-brainwash of society’s failure—the aftersound of oppression, but we know this maxim, and yet become willing participants to our own commodification. The world does this to us—holds us down. Then too, I’ve been thinking about the question you pose with regards to women and believing. Perhaps images and how we nurture young women as a society creates this insecurity. The American Dream chokes little girl’s dreams insomuch as not all of them will be able to live up to ideal beauty as constructed by benefactors of the dominant narrative, or those who dictate the ebb and flow of how we live. Beauty is a dangerous thing, and understand, Brown and Black women historically bear the weight of civilization, in addition to their own weight, which, at times, can be daunting. But more than that, the male plays a role in this insecurity, especially in these so-called streets, by his rejection of the woman as equal counterpart and anything other than “sexual object.” We just wanna love and have some warm body love us back—objectification is a delicate balance.

In other words, I saw it play out often with men who dominated women to the point they broke their spirit and stole their sound. The women couldn’t speak of their own oppression because they had no language to express the unimaginable, reminding me of Pudding and Sunshine who prostituted. Pudding was her abuser wrapped in a six-foot frame complete with a gold tooth. Sunshine adored Pudding so much she strolled around Logan Circle in DC every night selling the one commodity she knew well, and that was her[self]. Here’s the oxymoron: Sunshine never saw the light. Darkness choked her to death. She never got to understand we are the shadows in the dark novelist Toni Morrison talks about. We play between histories. Our sound originates from the breaking of sound—and then again. Like life, language is only the beginning and perhaps in its death, too, comes a new beginning, a new language.

At any moment I am inside your peripheral vision, imagining with exact description, the six by nine cell you sleep in, in all its isolation because this is, indeed, something I can reinvent from memory. The gray cinderblock serving as the prison’s architectural foundation is always already present. The dull silver ambiance from the metal toilet emits a lackluster glow. Blue could be the sky’s temperament on a November day when the fading brown leaves, that once seemed verdant, swirl from trees nowhere in sight as you struggle to breathe free air. Lxxxx, I have been thinking long and hard with regards to confinement, and the bordering of color, and how we as a society have imprisoned ourselves within the complexity of skin, as if human survival depends on this one specific thing.

Of course, I could make a conscious effort to avoid color or not invade your personal space trying to make a parallelism, but history can be unforgiving in how the past (re)constructs the future, whether we acknowledge it or not. For some reason, I feel our histories and futures intersect insomuch as we come from the same memory. In other words, I have inhabited the cell door clang, and I can’t ever escape that stagnant image of the pinstripe inmate constructed. There it is again, that word: construct or construction, which is another word for confinement on someone else’s term, a sort of deliberate scaffolding of a misguided structure. If I could go back to that initial moment after the formulation of earth—I’m talking about the first glorious sunrise after the Big Bang. Have you ever wondered what that feeling could have been like? If only someone could have been present after the bang—the explosion of particle-antiparticle into space-universal—suspended liquefied darkness. In the beginning a delayed oceanic swirl lacked blue, foliage lacked green—: construction had not begun. If only someone could have stopped progress at that precise moment. To see something neoteric and novel coming off the horizon must’ve been glory hallelujah.

Randall Horton is the recipient of the Gwendolyn Brooks Poetry Award, the Bea Gonzalez Poetry Award and most recently a National Endowment of the Arts Fellowship in Literature. Randall is a Cave Canem Fellow, a member of the Affrilachian Poets and a member of The Symphony: The House that Etheridge Built. Randall is Assistant Professor of English at the University of New Haven. An excerpt from his memoir titled Roxbury is published by Kattywompus Press. Triquarterly/Northwestern University Press is the publisher of his latest poetry collection Pitch Dark Anarchy.

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Joe-Pan-bw

 

DC

Green shoots on one side
of a January branch—
half choose hope

Congress—the mighty chambers—
a heart? a stomach?—two dogs
wrestling over street meat

The South 

Crawfish, a hundred perhaps, boiling
in a pot—a lava of spooning hoards—
we’ll suck the juices from their heads
& sex ourselves to sleep.

Thousands led to a stadium’s
mouth—the stadium
is fed better

Pecos River, Texas

My hand upon a man’s hand
blown red with paint dust
ten thousand years ago

 

Joe Pan’s first collection, Autobiomythography & Gallery, was named “Best First Book of the Year” by Coldfront. He is the founding editor & publisher of Brooklyn Arts Press & serves as the poetry editor for the arts magazine Hyperallergic. His work has appeared in such places as Boston Review, Brooklyn Rail, Cimarron Review, Denver Quarterly, Glimmer Train, H_ngm_n, Phoebe, & has been excerpted in The New York Times. He grew up along the Space Coast of Florida and now lives in Brooklyn.

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Carey McHugh’s poems have appeared or are forthcoming in Boston ReviewDenver Quarterly, Gulf Coast, and Tin House, among others. Her chapbook Original Instructions for the Perfect Preservation of Birds &c. was selected by Rae Armantrout for the Poetry Society of America’s 2008 New York Chapbook Fellowship. She lives and works in Manhattan.

This poem, “[You will come first as a sound],” has previously appeared in Gulf Coast, under the title “Open Brackets Closed Brackets.”

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Photo by Dave Bledsoe, Free Verse Photography

Photo by Dave Bledsoe, FreeVerse Photography

Augury Books is delighted to announce our selections from this summer’s open reading period. We are honored and humbled to have received so many wonderful manuscripts. It was difficult to come to a final decision. All of the work we received this year has helped to renew our faith in the high quality of independent literature.

Our next three titles will be:

Letters to Lxxxx by Randall Horton
American Gramophone by Carey McHugh
Hiccups, or Autobiomythography II by Joe Pan

We are also happy to highlight the works of our finalists:

A Love Supreme by Jeremy Townley
Children Left Breathing by Jeanne Althouse
Missionaries by David Ebenbach
True Love and Other Dreams of Miraculous Escape by Micah Perks
You Don’t Seem Happy Enough by Stephanie Austin
Hotel Grand Abyss by Robert Glick
Certain Registers by Thomas Cook
Snow Farmer by Benjamin Gantcher
A Miss by Marina Blitshteyn

Thank you again to everyone who submitted their work. We are truly grateful for your work and patience. Check back in the upcoming weeks and months to read selections from our three upcoming titles and our finalists!

For updates, follow this blog, like us on Facebook, or follow us on Twitter.

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Photo by Dave Bledsoe, Free Verse Photography

Photo by Dave Bledsoe, FreeVerse Photography

Frances Justine Post’s Beast (Augury Books, 2014) has received a micro-review in the latest edition of The Boston Review. Kay Cosgrove, poetry editor at Gulf Coast, commented on Beast‘s aesthetic approach and thematic development:

Though the collection’s narrative arc is familiar… the phrasing Post uses to convey it is dazzling, dangerous, visceral, and new… The poems dismantle the binaries of you and me, then and now, self and other, and singular and plural as they investigate, almost obsessively, how experience uproots and shapes us.”

The September/October issue is now available on newsstands. Additionally, each article from the current issue will soon be available to read online. Check back at The Boston Review’s site for updates.

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More on BEAST

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Photo by Dave Bledsoe, FreeVerse Photography

Thank you so much to everyone who submitted their fiction, creative non-fiction, and poetry during our open reading period. Our submissions period is officially closed and we are currently in the process of reading your work. We will be reaching out to authors about selections later this year. Thank you for entrusting us with your manuscript.

If you purchased one of our discounted books with your manuscript submission, we will be mailing those out later this month.

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