March 7th – Face Out: Monica Ong, W. Todd Kaneko, & Bethany Carlson


Word Up celebrates recent books by MONICA ONG (Silent Anatomies), W. TODD KANEKO (The Dead Wrestler Elegies), and BETHANY CARLSON (Diadem Me) with an afternoon of poetry and images.

* Monica Ong’s Silent Anatomies—selected by poet Joy Harjo as winner of the Kore Press First Book Award—is a collection of poems that traverse the body’s terrain, examining the phenomena of cultural silences. In her exciting debut, Monica Ong takes us to lyrical haunts on the boundaries of text and image, medicine and memory, immersing us deep in the waters of fluid identity.


* Bethany Carlson’s Diadem Me shimmers with accumulations of feeling and experience. These poems map a surface at once interior and exterior, and, as they do, they offer their readers new ways of moving through a world that is at once arbitrary and ordered. In mourning, jubilation, and wonderment, Carlson breaks the hymn in a Dickinsonian way, offering us something like transcendence—except her poems never forget their earthly, bodily roots.

W. Todd Kaneko is the author of The Dead Wrestler Elegies (Curbside Splendor, 2014). His poems, essays and stories can be seen in Bellingham Review, Los Angeles Review, Southeast Review, The Normal School, The Collagist, Barrelhouseand many other journals and anthologies. A recipient of fellowships from Kundiman and the Kenyon Review Writers Workshop, he lives in Grand Rapids, Michigan where he is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Writing at Grand Valley State University.

* This event is co-sponsored by Kundiman. Kundiman offers a comprehensive spectrum of arts programming that gives writers opportunities to inscribe the Asian American story onto American experience, transforming and enriching the landscape of our national culture. Kundiman sees literature not only as vehicle for cultural expression but also as an instrument for political dialogue and self-empowerment.

What does Kundiman mean? Kundiman is the classic form of Filipino love song—or so it seemed to colonialist forces in the Philippines. In fact, in Kundiman, the singer who expresses undying love for his beloved is actually singing for love of country. As an organization dedicated to providing a nurturing space for Asian American writers, we find in this name inspiration to create and support artistic expression.

Face Out: Monica Ong, W. Todd Kaneko, and Bethany Carlson
Saturday March 7, 2015
Word Up Community Bookshop/Libreria Comunitaria.
2113 Amsterdam ave (at 165 st)
New York, NY



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