Ilya Kaminsky - Deaf Republic: Poems & Carmen Giménez Smith - Be Recorder: Poems — at Politics and Prose at Union Market

Upcoming Event
Sunday, August 4, 2019 - 5:00pm to 6:00pm

Coming fifteen years after his award-winning Dancing in Odessa, Kaminsky’s second collection of poems is much more than a miscellany of lyrics. Arranged in two acts, the sequence plays out a parable of repression and freedom through the story of Vasenka, a town under military occupation. After soldiers kill a deaf boy for not stopping on command, the surviving citizens go deaf in solidarity, and, led by the owner of a puppet theatre, use sign language to organize a resistance. Kaminsky, born in the Soviet Union and himself hearing impaired since a childhood illness, eloquently conveys the power of both words and silence and the imperative to speak out.

A dazzling mix of rhyme, free verse, and prose poems, Smith’s sixth collection insists that we not only confront today’s troubling world—that “molten core of the real”—but acknowledge our role in it. Speaking out against compromise, self-delusion, and above all complacency, Smith’s speaker, a first-generation American, demands to know "why am I the locus of your discontent/ and not your president,” even as she asks herself "should I mother or write/ serve art or the state." Ultimately, Smith—author of books including Milk and Filth and the American Book Award-winning Bring Down the Little Birds, as well as poetry editor for The Nation—escapes the wreckage of late-stage capitalism into a compelling, video-game driven vision of the future.


Politics and Prose at Union Market
1270 5th st NE
Washington, DC 20002
Union Market
Fiction & Poetry
Deaf Republic: Poems Cover Image
ISBN: 9781555978310
Availability: In Stock—Click for Locations
Published: Graywolf Press - March 5th, 2019

Be Recorder: Poems Cover Image
ISBN: 9781555978488
Availability: In Stock—Click for Locations
Published: Graywolf Press - August 6th, 2019

Not Signed or Personalized