Wild Grass on the Riverbank, by Hiromi Itō


I’ve never read Hiromi Ito, but it’s reviews like this that make me wish I had. I especially appreciate the way the reviewer discussed the intermediation of translation, how some the linguistic possibilities of its parent language are inevitably lost, but how new possibilities are gained in the transition to the new language. Fascinating stuff.

Originally posted on Heavy Feather Review:


Wild Grass on the Riverbank, by Hiromi Itō (translated by Jeffrey Angles). Notre Dame, Indiana: Action Books. 103 pages. $16.00, paper.

(Be carried from your native land to foreign soil, where you will grow wild and propagate)

Marking her return to poetry, Wild Grass on the Riverbank by Hiromi Itō is first and foremost a textual space where language can seek out the wildest, most visceral modes of expression. This lush, entangled narrative poem follows the coming of age of a young girl, who is shuttled back and forth by her mother between a wasteland—reminiscent of arid Southern California—and an overgrown riverbank based on the city of Kumamoto in southern Japan.

More than a Bildungsroman in verse, more than an epic for the modern ages, Wild Grass on the Riverbank subverts traditional literary and symbolic binaries—poetry vs. prose vs. drama, stream of consciousness vs. fragmentation, folk tales and…

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It’s Been That Long, Huh?

The good thing about these long disappearances is that it means I’ve been up to good things. The bad thing is that I often neglect to share it here. If you’re ever looking for more of a day-to-day from me, my Twitter, Facebook, or Instagram pages are probably the better spots. This place is more like a hub or a repository, I suppose, though I hope to start sharing a little bit more about my professional world here in the coming months.

In the meantime, some announcements:

  • I’m now editing for Heavy Feather Review. They’re good people, and I’m very happy to be a part of a lit journal again. Why not submit some work?
  • I had two poems published up on Spork Press last fall.
  • I’ll have a poem coming out with Salt Hill in a couple months.

Anyway, that’s about it for now. But stay tuned for some more semi-frequent updates.

What I’m Reading – June 2014 Edition

I love reading. I’d better. It’s sorta what I get paid to do. But with professional obligations to read and write, it’s sometimes difficult to remember to read and write for fun. But I’ve been making more of an effort lately, and I’ve made some headway through my substantial to-read list. Why not follow me on Goodreads to keep abreast of what’s going on with my bookshelf?

Here’s what I’ve finished lately, in no particular order.

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A Belated Music Announcement – The Rise of Amniotic Buzzsaw


The past several months I’ve been working on finishing an album that I recorded with my friend Jake Frye (of Jesus on the Moon fame) while we were both still grad students at Western Washington University back in 2009–10. That’s a long time to sit on recordings, I know, but we were so proud of them that we knew we had to do some sort of formal release eventually. But first we had to master the tracks, and then we had to have album art done. And doing all that stuff in your spare time usually makes it take time.

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Diegesis Reviewed in Front Porch Journal

I had a pleasant surprise the other day when I discovered that Front Porch Journal recently reviewed The Diegesis, the 2013 poetry collection cowritten with Joshua Young and released by Gold Wake Press.

It was a very flattering review. But mostly I’m happy to see that at least someone is still reading the collection a year after its release. I’ve been learning that while poetry collections through indie presses may not sell in the tens of thousands (or really anywhere even close), but sometimes they can have a nice, slow burn. Here’s to slow burns.

Want to read The Diegesis? Buy a copy through me here.

Want to learn more about The Diegesis? Check out the blog archives.


A Farewell From Anyway, Soon

About a year and a half ago, my band, Anyway, Soon set out to record what was intended to be our first and final album. The duties of real life were taking their priority with members moving to different area codes, but we wanted to set down our final batch of songs as a sort of record of what we had done.

Sadly, although the recording process generally went very well, by the time everyone had dispersed, we just hadn’t gotten far along enough on the tracks to release a complete album, as intended. We did finish this one song though, which you can listen to below.

There are rough mixes of the other songs on our drummer/engineer’s Soundcloud page. It was a blast playing with these guys, and if I had one regret, it’s that I never found myself able to commit the amount of time/effort into the project as it deserved. But such is life.

A New Poem Up In TAB: “The Girl Who Thought She Knew Something About Monsters”



I’m bummed I’m not taking part in National Poetry Month this year. But I have a good reason, and I’ll be sharing that with you soon, too. It’s the most overdue of all the overdue news. It’s the most hyperbolic thing ever.

In the meantime, I had a new poem up over the weekend in TAB: The Journal of Poetry & Poetics. It’s called “The Girl Who Thought She Knew Something About Monsters,” and it’s the continuing adventures of someone from The Diegesis. It’s the beginning of a new project.

Why not give it a read?