Do we read poems searching for answers? Do we write poems searching for answers? In the case of Naomi Replansky, yes and yes.
Vi Khi Nao is a prolific, prize-winning author working in poetry, fiction, film and cross-genre collaboration.We talked about her two “sapphic” books—The Vanishing Point of Desire and Swans in Half-Mourning—and, knowing she’d give me brilliant answers, I also asked her two questions almost impossible to answer.
As a systems change consultant, Shah has asked tough questions about domestic violence against women—and the relationships between structural, state, community and interpersonal violence—and then provided transformative research and strategies. Shah’s poetry asks hard questions, too.
“This cycle of sexual assault must end. We must do the work. We must evolve. We must be well.”
Please spread the word to feminist poets: If you’re writing about what you’re witnessing, what you’re living and what haunts you, we invite you to send your work to Ms. Muse for consideration.
“We’re here for the duration. We have to continue, we have to keep going. We have to lift people up with our thoughts, actions, our work.”
Joy Harjo was named Poet Laureate by the Library of Congress this week, making history as the first Native American to be selected for the post.
In this edition of Ms. Muse, four feminist poets write and talk about queerness, happiness, genderless sex and imagining change—personally and politically.
“I don’t think I can isolate what I need as a writer from what I need as a Black woman, mother, wife—which is to live… And to know that my children have a future. And to know that my husband will not be hunted down.”
I think it is safe to say that my fire for poetry has been re-ignited. With all of these incredible collections, how could it not be? These are poems for understanding, compassion, anger and resistance.