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Poet Laureate of San Francisco, Kim Shuck reading new poetry with E.K. Keith
February 3, 2019 @ 5:00 pm - 7:00 pm
celebrating their recent books of poetry
Clouds Running In – by Kim Shuck – from Taurean Horn Press
“‘You will know the poets by the dirt under our nails,’ writes Kim Shuck in CLOUDS RUNNING IN, a spirited, witty, moving book of poetry that sings the mystical connections in everyday life. Shuck’s vivid imagery balances dark moods and self-deprecating humor. Drawing on her Cherokee and Polish roots, Shuck offers us the bittersweet music of lyrically expressed memory and the generational trauma of the Native American holocaust, lived in nerve and bone.”— Linda Rodriguez
Ordinary Villains – by EK Keith – from Nomadic Press
The world is full of good people who do bad things—drunk drivers, dumpster divers, absent lovers, astronauts, waitstaff, aunts and uncles, and people who have cell phones. Is that you? If you’ve ever secretly enjoyed the effects of climate change or thrown away your recycling—even though you worry about the future—you might find a funhouse mirror in Ordinary Villains.
Kim Shuck is a silly protein. She has been writing since before she could write and arting longer than that. Raised in and by San Francisco, Shuck takes each sidewalk square personally. She is the poet of two full length collections of poems, soon to be three, maybe four. She is also author of one narrative in prose vignettes. In June of 2017 Kim was named the 7th poet laureate of San Francisco.
E. K. Keith is a Latinx poet who calls San Francisco home, but her hometown is Houston where she learned to write in the sprawl. She performs her poems on the street corner and takes the mic at coffee shops, bars, and radio stations. Her work appears online and in magazines on all three coasts and places beyond, and ORDINARY VILLAINS is her first book of poetry. E.K. organizes Poems Under the Dome, San Francisco’s annual open mic celebration of Poetry Month inside City Hall. Her work as a public school librarian creates opportunities for her to make the world a better place every day.
Praise for Ordinary Villains:
“Against a dystopic nationalism come early, E. K. Keith’s poetry is a tyrant’s headquarters on fire. She seems to know all of the hidden tunnels of language. With incredible musical beauty to her poems, she reveals the mind behind a blues chord’s anger, and the omniscience of those who know its progression. A muralist in canyons of love and family, an elder playing with matches in the company lobby; Keith’s poetry has unfathomable grace. She is your big sister’s insight and true rebel guidance. Keith knows the circuit breakers in the jungle and will lead you out.”
– Tongo Eisen-Martin, author of Heaven is All Goodbyes
“Keith has that rare and precious combination of a loving heart, a scalpel sharp grasp of politics and a trickster’s sense of humor. E. K. is a first draft pick for the list of people you’d want with you come the zombie apocalypse. Read the book and find out why.”
– Kim Shuck, 7th Poet Laureate of San Francisco
“Ordinary Villains is the stunning debut collection by E. K. Keith. Welcome to E. K.’s America: you might recognize it. It is an America that is poisoning itself; an America that is forcing young girls to hate their bodies; an America at war with itself and others; an America that believes in a dream that has become a nightmare for most. Many of these poems are rough in their language but sound vaguely familiar. Why? Because they have the ring of truth about them, a sound that is recognizable anywhere and by anyone. In the world of I, a married man curses at his date at the bar, another man kills himself with heroin and tortures his family, a girl tortures herself to be attractive and everyone follows the American dream—drunk—burning fossil fuel up and down the highways. These are musical but plain-speaking poems that concern themselves with ordinary lives as they are being lived in the 21st century and are peopled with ordinary, flawed sinners: people like you and me. These pieces are chanted like spells and they weave their magic on the reader: once you read them you will never forget them.”
– Natasha Dennerstein, author of Seahorse and About a Girl