Poet & Critic—

10 Things

The Curious Thing by Sandra Lim (W.W. Norton). “Lim’s voice, which is fiercer and more dexterous than ever, brings into being a collection of powerful, dark, and inscrutable poems that defy gravity.” —Aria Aber, LA Review of Books

Natasha Oladokun. Read “I Asked God for the Moon.” Natasha Oladokun (she/her) is a poet and essayist. She holds fellowships from Cave Canem, the Virginia Center for Creative Arts, the Jackson Center for Creative Writing, Twelve Literary Arts, and the University of Wisconsin-Madison, where she was the inaugural First Wave Poetry fellow. Her work has appeared in the American Poetry Review, The Academy of American Poets, Harvard Review Online, and Kenyon Review Online. You can read her column The PettyCoat Chronicles—on pop culture and period dramas—at Catapult. She is Associate Poetry Editor at storySouth, and currently lives in Madison, WI.

Inheritance by Taylor Johnson (Alice James Books). “The poems are personal, not confessional so much as exploratory. ‘Sometimes I feel so outside. Then you invite me in.’ These poems do the same: they invite us in.” —Nina McLaughlin, The Boston Globe

Vantage by Taneum Bambrick (Copper Canyon Press). “Bambrick’s voice is wholly original in its clarity and colloquial intimacy. Her poetic techniques—narrative, elliptical, lyrical, documentary—defy category. If I were to categorize it, I would say this prophetic collection functions as a radical example of hybridized working class poetry and ecopoetry. Vantage is refreshing and necessary work, reflecting our current moment as it relates to gender and bionomical shifts.” —Aria Aber, The Rumpus

Emily Lee Luan. Read “Ruthless.” Emily Lee Luan is a Taiwanese American poet and essayist. She is the author of I Watch the Boughs, selected by Gabrielle Calvocoressi for a 2020 Poetry Society of America Chapbook Fellowship. A 2020 Margins Fellow at the Asian American Writers’ Workshop and the recipient of a 2022 Pushcart Prize, her work has appeared or is forthcoming in Best American Poetry (2021), Best New Poets (2019), American Poetry Review, The Offing, and elsewhere. She holds an MFA in Poetry from Rutgers University-Newark and lives in Brooklyn.

Nadine Marshall. Read “Mercy” and “Plunder”. Nadine is a queer black poet from Detroit, MI and has appeared at TED x U of M, The Rustbelt Regional Poetry Slam in Columbus, OH, and The National Poetry Slam Competition in Oakland, CA. They co-founded FRUIT, an independent, community-led reading and dialogue series for and by marginalized voices. Nadine holds an MSW and currently works as the Content Coordinator for the Allied Media Conference which is hosted every year in Detroit.

The Offing publishes work that challenges, experiments, provokes — work that pushes literary and artistic forms and conventions. You’ll want to read “The Dog”.

the magic my body becomes by Jess Rizkallah (University of Arkansas). In the magic my body becomes, Jess Rizkallah seeks a vernacular for the inescapable middle ground of being Arab American—a space that she finds, at times, to be too Arab for America and too American for her Lebanese elders. Also, Jess is dope.

Michael Dhyne. Read “Kara”. Michael was born and raised in California. He was a Henry Hoyns Fellow in the University of Virginia’s MFA program, where he taught poetry and was awarded the Academy of American Poets Prize. Recent work has appeared in or is forthcoming from Fugue, Salt Hill, Sonora Review, and Washington Square Review. 

Mezzanines by Matthew Olzmann (Alice James Books). “There’s something inherently spiritual about Olzmann’s Mezzanines. . . . It’s a place of reflection and contemplation, a temporary reprieve from the world’s chaos and a reach for a vision of paradise.” —The Los Angeles Review of Books


Photographer: Naomi Ishisaka