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Poetry at Literati:Tommye Blount & Adam Giannelli

Literati is pleased to welcome poets Adam Giannelli and Tommye Blount who will be reading from their latest collections Tremulous Hinge and What We Are Not For.

About Tremulous Hinge:
Rain intermits, bus windows steam up, loved ones suffer from dementia--in the constantly shifting, metaphoric world of Tremulous Hinge, figures struggle to remain standing and speaking against forces of gravity, time, and language. In these visually porous poems, boundaries waver and reconfigure along the rumbling shoreline of Rockaway or during the intermediary hours that an insomniac undergoes between darkness and dawn. Through a series of self-portraits, elegies, and Eros-tinged meditations, this hovering never subsides but offers, among the fragments, momentary constellations: "moths all swarming the / same light bulb." 

From the difficulties of stuttering to teetering attempts at love, from struggling to order a hamburger to tracing the deckled edge of a hydrangea, these poems tumble and hum, revealing a hinge between word and world. Ultimately, among lofting waves, collapsing hands, and darkening skies, words themselves--a stutterer's maneuvers through speech, a deceased grandfather's use of punctuation--become forms of consolation. From its initial turbulence to its final surprising solace, this debut collection mesmerizes. 

About What We Are Not For:
 Through biography, fairy tale, and history, Tommye Blount's debut chapbook WHAT ARE WE NOT FOR redraws the fatherland of manhood as a territory beyond whose borders tenderness and cruelty fight for space. The men and boys in these poems are transformed into instruments of pleasure and of destruction, worshipped artifacts and disfigured toys, victims and assailants. WHAT ARE WE NOT FOR moves its reader toward caustic longing, the hope that danger and risk promise. 

"Tommye Blount's WHAT ARE WE NOT FOR is an instruction manual on how to fall to our knees and crawl from the mouth of failed transformations. Here, Pinocchio's boyhood demands bloodspill for proof and the speaker's humanity is never fulfilled: 'After all, I am a broken animal.' Desire turns toward the darkest trail and does not look back through challenging forms and twisted prosody. This collection is rope and whip, daughter-sons and muzzles, and 'a prayer they mistake/ for a growl.' I am not myself, any longer, after these poems.' Phillip B. Williams"

Adam Giannelli's poems have appeared in the Kenyon Review, New England ReviewPloughshares, FIELDYale Review, and elsewhere. He is the translator of a selection of prose poems by Marosa di Giorgio, Diadem, and the editor of High Lonesome, a collection of essays on Charles Wright. He lives in Salt Lake City, Utah. 

Born and raised in Detroit, Tommye Blount now lives in the nearby suburb of Novi, Michigan. He has been the recipient of fellowships and scholarships from Cave Canem and Bread Loaf Writers' Conference. His work has appeared in POETRY, New England Review, Phantom, Four Way Review, The Offing, Vinyl, and other publications. He holds an MFA from The MFA Program for Writers at Warren Wilson College.

Event date: 
Thursday, May 16, 2019 - 7:00pm
Event address: 
124 E. Washington St.
Ann Arbor, MI 48104
Tremulous Hinge (Iowa Poetry Prize) Cover Image
ISBN: 9781609384869
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: University Of Iowa Press - April 15th, 2017

What Are We Not for Cover Image
ISBN: 9781495157639
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Bull City Press - December 6th, 2016