Reading: Jessica Lawson, Ajha Fox, Mairead Case, and Aerik Francis, Friday, June 3, 2022, 7pm

Join us on Friday, June 3, 2022, at 7pm for a pre-release launch of Jessica Lawson’s debut collection Gash Atlas, winner of the Kore Press Institute Poetry Prize. Lawson also has a baby due this summer, so we are celebrating her book early! Hosted by Steven Dunn and Hillary Leftwich, the event’s featured readers are Aerik Francis, Ahja Fox, and Mairead Case. Gash Atlas is a nightmarish cartography of life in the Trump era. Through poetic and visual “maps,” this collection excavates nested layers of sexuality, violence, and white supremacy, finally turning the lens of critique back on its own speaker.

Aerik Francis is a Queer Black & Latinx poet & teaching artist based in Denver, Colorado, USA. Aerik is the author of the chapbook BODYELECTRONIC recently released in April 2022 with Trouble Department Press. Aerik also recently released an EP of poetry-songs called SYZYGY (available now on bandcamp). They are a Canto Mundo poetry fellow, a The Watering Hole poetry fellow, and recently the Spring workshop resident with Tiny Spoon LitMag. Aerik is also a poetry reader for Underblong poetry journal and a coordinator with Slam Nuba. They have poetry published widely, links of which may be found at their website . Find them on IG/TW/youtube/soundcloud @phaentompoet

Ahja Fox is a Colorado native who has editorial, hosting, and teaching experience through Art of Storytelling, Poetix University, Copper Nickel, and Homology Lit. She has been published in various online and print journals like Five:2:One, LEVELER, Driftwood Press, Okay Donkey, SWWIM and more (including various anthologies). Nominated by several journals for Best of the Net and The Pushcart Prize, Ahja has finally gotten up the nerve to draft two poetry manuscripts. She has also acquired a new title that she can’t wait to share with you all soon.

Mairead Case (rhymes with parade) is a writer, teacher, and editor. She is the author of the novels TINY and SEE YOU IN THE MORNING (featherproof), the poetry chapbook TENDERNESS (Meekling Press), and the TO THE TEETH column at Entropy. Mairead is an editor at Public Media Institute and MAGGOT BRAIN, holds a PhD from the University of Denver, organizes the Dikeou Literary Series, and teaches reading and writing at universities, jails, and middle schools. |

Jessica Lawson (she/her/hers) is Denver-based writer, teacher, and queer single parent. Her debut book of poetry, Gash Atlas (forthcoming 2022), was selected by judge Erica Hunt for the Kore Press Institute Poetry Prize, and her chapbook Rot Contracts was published in 2020 (Trouble Department). A Pushcart-nominated poet, her work has appeared in The Rumpus; Entropy; ANMLY; Dreginald; Yes, Poetry; The Wanderer; Cosmonauts Avenue; and elsewhere.