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Laura Catherine Brown and Maw Shein Win
May 18, 2018 @ 7:30 pm - 9:30 pm
About Made By Mary
When Mary and Ann agree to a surrogacy partnership everything goes awry. Ann, a pre-school teacher, is desperate for the children she physically can’t have. Mary, a 50-year-old pagan jeweler, hopes to make amends for years of maternal neglect. Together, they plunge into the expensive, morally complex world of reproductive technology and an intimacy neither they, nor Ann’s husband, Joel, is prepared for. Financially hard-pressed, Joel goes behind Ann’s back and agrees to help Mary grow a marijuana crop in her attic. Ann struggles with the rigors and enforced togetherness of the reproductive regime. And Mary’s delight in being a “bountiful earth mother” is offset by the physical ordeal of bearing multiple fetuses. The stakes escalate as the police start sniffing around the grow house, a pagan ritual goes tragically awry, and the pregnancy becomes more perilous, forcing Ann, Joel, and Mary to confront the potentially calamitous consequences of pursuing their deepest desires. Sharp and audacious, Made by Mary is a black comedy using magic realism to blow up myths about women, mothers, and motherhood, where even the most extreme situations are rendered with candor, intelligence, and empathy.
About Invisible Gifts
In her first full-length collection of poems, Win depicts a colorful world imbued with unexpected paradoxes: nature is both comforting and savagely unnerving; love is permanent and fleeting; the accuracy and flaws of memory abound. Her experiences with illness and recovery intertwine with her identity as a Burmese American daughter of immigrant doctors, flowing in poems like “Hands” My father’s hands, frail birds, shaking wings. / In Burmese, “win” means bright. / Hands that stitched skin together and brought back life. Win’s unique perspective and artful language offer readers insight into how the heart can bend and mend without breaking.