Small Siren Book Launch: Alexandra Mattraw, Valerie Witte, Jen Coleman, & Steffi Drewes
August 3 @ 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm
Friday, August 3rd, please join us to celebrate Alexandra Mattraw’s small siren.
Alexandra Mattraw’s debut full-length book of poems, small siren, is just out from Brooklyn’s Cultural Society. She is also the author of four chapbooks, including flood psalm (2017, Dancing Girl Press). Her poems and reviews have appeared in Denver Quarterly, The Poetry Project, VOLT, Verse, The Volta, and elsewhere. Her previous books have been named finalists via Nightboat Books, Slope Editions, and 1913 Press. In Oakland and San Francisco, Alexandra curates an art-centric writing and performance series called Lone Glen, now in its seventh year.
Of small siren, poet Aaron Shurin writes,
“When good poetry hits, it animates the actual, it becomes the actual. That’s small siren: a serious romp of constructive music that is what it says. Science and nature unlock their mysteries by being precise; in small siren the words — cut, spliced, compressed — form units of attention enacting the physical world so precisely that even the sun and the moon ride their arcs untroubled. Across cities and seas, Alexandra Mattraw’s language isn’tattached to images; it comes out of them, like a birthright. The authenticity is declarative and unmistakable: ‘A sign is a block, an island, a cloud, a clock.’ She makes it real.”
Jen Coleman is author of PSALMS FOR DOGS AND SORCERERS, from Trembling Pillow Press, winner of the 2013 Bob Kaufman Book Prize selected by poet Dara Wier. She is also author of WE DENIZENS, from Furniture Press, 2016. Originally from Minnesota, Jen received her BA from Beloit College and MFA from George Mason University in Virginia. She spent eight years in New York before moving to Portland, OR. She now lives in Portland, OR where she is part of the Spare Room reading series collective and works for the Oregon Environmental Council.
Steffi Drewes is the author of Tell Me Every Anchor Every Arrow (Kelsey Street Press, 2016) and four poetry chapbooks, most recently New Animal (Dancing Girl Press, 2017). Her work has appeared in various journals and event series, including the 2018 Way Bay Poetry Assembly and postcard project at the Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive. She has been awarded writing and art residencies at Vermont Studio Center, The Desert House in California, and the Wassaic Project in New York, where she debuted an original set of photo-based tarot cards. She lives in the Bay Area.
Valerie Witte’s latest chapbook, It’s been a long time since I’ve dreamt of someone, was recently published by Dancing Girl Press, and her other books include a game of correspondence (Black Radish Books) and The history of mining (g.e. collective/Poetry Flash). Her work has also appeared in literary journals such as VOLT, Diagram, Dusie, Alice Blue, Shampoo, Interim, and elsewhere. She is a founding member of the Bay Area Correspondence School and has been a recipient of residencies from Hambidge Center for the Creative Arts, Ragdale Foundation, and La Porte Peinte in Noyers, France.