Earlier this year, I thought to put to practice my belief in poetry and decided to challenge Mike Miller for his New York State Assembly seat. Miller votes against the reproductive health rights of women in our district. He is another man who believes he should have a say over what women do with their bodies. Despicable. Additionally, he has historically voted against workplace protections for LGBTQ people, like myself; he voted against marriage equality as a New York Democrat. His voting record proves him a misogynist and homophobe. HE HAS GOT TO GO. I believe in a New York State homes guarantee, prison abolition, reforming policing, free public education, investing in our most segregated schools, decriminalizing sex work, decriminalizing marijuana, repealing the Taylor Law and decriminalizing the strike for public employees and much more. Please check out the campaign site at DeJesus2020.com, donate to the campaign and volunteer to canvass (which has been really fun!)
I am excited to share that Writing Voice into the Archive vol. 1, edited by Jennifer Tamayo, co-authored by Sade LaNay and yours truly, is available to order! Writing Voice into the Archive includes “Plethora: a Poetics of Vesselhood”, a poetic exegesis on “plethora” in triptychal form. Plethora includes my performance collaborator Sammy Roth‘s writing, in effort to “resist the “I” in a poethical state of being.” (Copies are limited!) Check out our HARPYLAND performance at The Poetry Project here.
The Atlas Review selected my book NOCT- The Threshold of Madness for publication earlier this year. NOCT- is a chronicle of identity-damage composed entirely of language selected and erased from a popular how-to book in conducting black magic. I began work on this book in 2014. NOCT- The Threshold of Madness is now available for $12 when you pre-order on The Atlas Review website. (Copies are limited!)
Of NOCT-, Natalie Eilbert writes,”Garden-pathing, it was recently explained to me, is a grammatical sentence that lures readers into one meaning, only to be misled, whether through syntactical arrangement or flat-out lexical deception. Isn’t this, I wondered, what poetry is? Joey De Jesus writes early on in Noct—The Threshold of Madness, “I shatter the expected / to access the page” and I think of garden-pathing, the lexical arrangement and its access. Who is left out of the page when we expect any system? Noct—The Threshold of Madness is an erasure poem based on a popular how-to book in black magic. In this chapbook, De Jesus chronicles identity disrepair by internalizing the homology of blackness with the demonic. He writes, “I—I / trick of my mind / Goal and motive coming to me / As the I speaks forth.” There is a possession to his disrepair, one that throttles intended meaning into a spatiotemporal sphere of one. The language is at once devastating as it is curated by a mastermind. Here, agency is pushed under the lens as with everything else. The “I” is void as it is also muscle. It sings without epiphany. It thrives on the splintering explanation.”
There are some other excited things planned in upcoming year: Apogee Journal‘s forthcoming issue 12 and on-going workshop series are in excellent shape; Basilica Soundscape’s, The Triptych, enters its third year; Several works are forthcoming in gallery installations and my full-length experimental book object(s) HOAX has been selected for publication in 2020 with The Operating System. Updates forthcoming!
I’m so thankful for the immense support!
My chapbook Noct: The Threshold of Madness from the larger body of poems, scrolls, planisphere and poem-objects, HOAX, has been selected as 2019 Chapbook winner alongside several other wonderful writers!
The Atlas Review will be publishing:
Ellena Savage’s Yellow City
Rae Gouirand’s The History of Art
Trevor Ketner’s White Combine: A Portrait of Robert Rauschenberg
Shannon Sankey’s We Ran Rapturous
Olatunde Osinaike’s Speech Therapy
Kina Viola’s Darkcutter
Noct: The Threshold of Madness is a poem of identity disrepair erased using anti-normative, anti-black images, language, and ideas from in popular how-to black magic book. I graphed over page of the book with sigils, circles, and other coded markings. I un/wrote between 2014 and 2015.
Noct has received a lot of support. Special thanks to Michael Morse, whom edited an excerpt in The Literary Review. Another excerpt was selected by Anomaly (fka Drunken Boat), nominated for and printed in Bettering American Poetry vol. II. I thank their editors and staff. The book of erasures was installed and performed in Artists Space‘s “Pride Goes Before a Fall / Beware of a Holy Whore / Mise en Abyme” (2016) with thanks to Harry Burke.
I’m very excited to return to this piece with a different knowledge painfully acquired. I hope to learn projection mapping software, to elevate the piece next level. Cause there’s gonna be a launch.
Thanks to the Newtown Literary Alliance, I will be leading a creative writing workshop titled, “You Found a Poem in the Stars: Using the Cosmos to Write Poetry of the Self”
Queens Library at Woodside, 54-22 Skillman Avenue
March 02, 2019
2:30 p.m.–4:30 p.m.
In this interactive workshop, participants will read poems by Jerome Rothenberg, Vievee Francis, and dg nanouk okpik to discuss how each poet draws from cosmology to compose metonym, metaphor, and grammar in poems of self-formation. We will also read and discuss specific poetic procedures used by Robin Coste Lewis and LaTasha N. Nevada Diggs and, using these poets’ techniques, compose poems of the self using language literally found in astrological/mythological texts and glossaries from across cultural traditions.
An areíto performed by B Taylor, Sammy Roth and yours truly at the Poetry Project’s HARPYLAND, 10/31/18
Music, readings, performance, prayer, peace. Hosted by Hudson-based artist Shanekia McIntosh. With performances by Martine Gutierrez, Zeelie Brown, Davon, Lady Moon, Joey De Jesus, Bibbe Hansen and B Taylor. For the second year in a row, Basilica Soundscape hosting TRIPTYCH, a day of collaborative performance art. TRIPTYCH triangulates at, or toward— The day of performances organizes around three nodes (shrine, movement, and plenum), each participant a star constellating sacred geometries. As a form, the triptych offers reliefs carved on three panels, three alternative imaginings. How might recuperating a livable planet demand a reimagining mysticism? TRIPTYCH moves beyond, approximating at a collective truth through collaborative performance. If the stage is a shrine is the universe, all above, turning into one—and all of space is full, then what are things and what is movement across space?
Several poems from my long series VANTABLACK appeared earlier this month in The Brooklyn Rail, which was a wonderful way to kick off the month~
Today (6/28) I’m participating in “Get Published: How to Create a Poetry Manuscript,” a panel in Astoria for programmed by Newtown Literary at the Broadway branch of the Queens Library at 40-20 Broadway (near the Steinway stop on the M/R train) with Omotara James and Carlos Hiraldo moderated by Sokunthary Svay. There’s much to say~
Then, tomorrow (6/29) at 7 at Books Are Magic, I’m performing new writing (i think) in Weirdd June: Murphy, Levitt, De Jesus and DeSilva-Johnson ~ <3 thanks to the Longofonos & WEIRDD w/ Jerome Ellison Murphy and Jen Levitt, and a lecture by Lynne DeSilva-Johnson
I’m rolling through to perform at the Studio Museum on Sunday as well~ https://www.studiomuseum.org/…/brown-paper-zine-…/1530374400