The Holloway Series in Poetry welcomes Farid Matuk and Jessica Laser

Farid Matuk and Jessica Laser

Each academic year, The English Department’s Holloway Series in Poetry welcomes several renowned and rising contemporary poets to campus to share and celebrate their work.

This week, The Holloway Series and Mixed Blood invite you to join us for a reading and talk by Farid Matuk on Wednesday, November 8. The Mixed Blood talk, “Having Been of the Type: Taking Up Orlando Patterson’s Call to Reimagine Freedom,” will be held at 4 pm in 306 Wheeler Hall, followed by a reading featuring Farid Matuk and Jessica Laser at 6:30 in the Maude Fife Room (315 Wheeler). 

Farid Matuk is the author of This Isa Nice Neighborhood (Letter Machine), which was awarded an Honorable Mention in the 2011 Arab American Book Awards and named a finalist for the Norma Farber First Book Award by the Poetry Society of America. He has also written several chapbooks, including My Daughter La Chola (Ahsahta) and Don’t Call It Reginald Denny (Society Editions). Matuk’s poems and translations from Spanish appear in journals such as Floor: A Journal of Aesthetic Experiments, Boundary 2, The Boston Review, Denver Quarterly, Poetry, Kadar Koli, and Translation Review. His second full-length collection of poems, The Real Horse, is forthcoming in 2018 from the University of Arizona Press. He teaches English at the University of Arizona.

Jessica Laser is the author of Sergei Kuzmich from All Sides (Letter Machine Editions, forthcoming) and two chapbooks. She lives and studies English literature in Berkeley, CA.

Long Before and Shortly After (by Farid Matuk)

The alley runs long
men keep cave or ship in their garages
pass a trumpet
trees stand outside
and grow a sticky purple
flower over pack mules herding
into the alley, the mules sniff
provenance papers off each other
bills of lading. It is 1981
I am seven, a bullet
waits for Ronald Reagan
I am starting to understand
there are things called
Velcro others moon
in Anaheim my thighs burn
on the vinyl bench
of the Impala it sluices
onto the freeway
Harbor Blvd., Anaheim Blvd.
Lincoln Ave., St. Boniface doors
tarred, I’m told, to keep the spic
Catholics in at least
today I am among my whites
whom I love very much