Saturday, February 17, 2007

Journey to the West in Barrow Street

The new Winter 2006 issue of Barrow Street is out, and nestled snugly in its center is Journey to the West, a 15-page selection of my poems that won the 2006 Vincent Chin Memorial Chapbook Prize. Thanks to the folks at Kundiman, which sponsors the prize (and which is also sending me to their summer retreat at the University of Virginia in June). I also have to give a shout-out to Roger Pao, whose blog reminded me about the contest just before the deadline...and to Alli Warren and Del Ray Cross, whose collaborative efforts brought quite a few of the poems into being...and to Eileen for mentioning it.

My contributor's copies just arrived. I'm pretty sure this is about as many poems of mine as I've ever seen in print in one place before, so it's a bit of a strange sensation--a simultaneous feeling of pride and of looking-over-my-shoulder, is-anybody-else-reading-this embarrassment. The "chapbook" part is a bit of a misnomer, I guess; I'd been fantasizing about it as a pull-out section that you could detach from the binding with a satisfying yank, but it's pretty well integrated (not that that's a bad thing--there's a lot of other good stuff in the issue too, so you don't have to just read it on my account).

I'll be doing a reading in NYC for Kundiman on April 8 at Verlaine, with Marlon Unas Esguerra, Rona Luo, and Margaret Rhee. Hope to see some of you there, after you've rushed out to your local better bookstore and bought up every copy of Barrow Street your little hands can carry.