…to an evening of reading / performance on

Thursday, October 8th, 7:30 to 11pm

Poetry / micro-fiction / cross-genre / translation readings by

Brandon Brown, visiting from San Francisco, CA


Daniel Borzutzky, who lives here in Chicago, IL

Readings will begin at 8pm

These writers are funny, tragic, passionate, irreverent and devotional, multilingual and obsessed with (not to say acting out on) the profounder issues and minutiae of translation and inter-textuality.  Readings not to miss!

This event is hosted by Judith Goldman, a Chicago-area poet and postdoctoral fellow / assistant professor at the University of Chicago.  Location: 5517 N. Paulina St., 1 (Andersonville).

[See more on event location / directions to site below writer bios and sample texts.]


The Working Day Lady Died

It’s 1349 on the fief and I’ve got 163 holidays

my colleagues and their offspring know

Bastille Day is no holiday! so I just get

my joints scuffed because I go straight from

one demarcated zone without my species

essence to chaos: sweet, domestic, and high;

filling it with mescal and snuck smokes,

head out the window like a fucking

crane. some of my colleagues shrug about

“every day a beating”, it’s all abstraction

and no nectar. Little lambs love to watch

their friends sheared. My batsuit. My shred

passports. My dead co-workers. Dead

on Bastille Day, weird.

Brandon Brown is from Kansas City, Missouri. Poems recently in Brooklyn Rail, Try!, Sprung Formal, West Wind Review. His friends have published chapbooks. Memoirs of My Nervous Illness (Cy Press), 908-1078 (Transmission), Camels! (Taxt) and the forthcoming Wondrous Things I Have Seen (Mitzvah Chaps). He publishes small press books under the imprint OMG! and in October 2009 will be guest blogging at poetryproject.org .


See more of Brandon Brown’s work at:







The Book of Decomposition

It is in the tranquillity of decomposition that I remember the long confused emotion which was my life.

Samuel Beckett, Molloy

Here the reader rots alongside of the book and its characters. A man in the opening chapter pulls strands of hair off his head; the reader does the same. A man feels maggots crawling all over his skin; the reader feels the same. The book begins in a butcher shop that has been looted by poor bodies that tear out cow intestines and unravel them in the dead grass behind the butcher’s shed. The bodies see books in the intestines whose characters are their mirror images, and the bodies grow terrified of themselves. They run into the woods but they hate nature so they take shelter in the stables where rotten bodies hide in the hay. The dead bodies in this stable are countries and the protagonist says USA USA your assets are rotten you are dying and Haiti your huts have flooded and your citizens kill for bread and beans and New Orleans your bodies float in puddles of shit hey China your babies are drinking poisoned milk and Mexico your peasants cannot hear or see and in the USA the assets are rotten the Bolivians sell less coke on Wall Street the Iranians don’t have enough money to blow Israel off the map the Russians can’t build new weapons to sell to the Syrians and Venezuelans the Cuban doctors and prostitutes service bodies that live far away the nations conduct business in body parts here are the legs of our citizens we will trade you for arms and kidneys and here take these eyes and livers and give us hearts and tongues and intestines. Full stop. Period. In the end it’s unclear if it’s the reader or the characters who request some form of movement to free the bodies from the sorcery of global capital. Nevertheless, the request is granted and the book ends happily with the entrance of a saint who has so much love that he heals the sores of the bodies with his tongue and prepares them once more to succeed as cosmopolitan bodies in a ring of fantastically interconnected commerce. The book ends with a giant ejaculation behind the butcher shop where the bodies rub against each other as if there were no barriers to keep them from consummating their fiscal intimacies. And in the final scene water streams off the pages, cleansing the skin of the readers in a climax of diluvial bubbling.

Daniel Borzutzky’s books include The Book of Interfering Bodies (Nightboat Books, forthcoming), The Ecstasy of Capitulation (BlazeVox, 2007), Arbitrary Tales (Triple Press, 2005), and the chapbooks One Size Fits All (Scantily Clad Press, 2009) and Failure in the Imagination (Bronze Skull Press, 2007). He is the translator of Song for his Disappeared Love by Raul Zurita (Action Books, forthcoming); Port Trakl by Jaime Luis Huenún (Action Books, 2008); and One Year and other stories by Juan Emar, which was published as a special issue of the Review of Contemporary Fiction. Journal publications include Fence; Chicago Review; TriQuarterly; Action, Yes; Conjunctions; Words Without Borders; Circumference; American Letters and Commentary; Mandorla; Denver Quarterly and many others. He lives in Chicago, and is a faculty member in the English Department at Wright College.  His website is www.danielborzutzky.com .

See more of Daniel Borzutzky’s work online:







Judith Goldman’s residence:

5517 N. Paulina Ave, #1—about 6 blocks north of Foster, between Catalpa and Gregory; Paulina is one block west of Ashland.

PLEASE NOTE:  This location is unfortunately not wheelchair accessible.


From the Bryn Mawr stop: walk west from Broadway to Paulina, about ½ mile (it’s a 12-15 min. walk).  Turn left at Paulina and walk 1 1/2 blocks (my building is about 3 houses down from the corner of Paulina and Gregory).

Email jgoldman1@uchicago.edu or goldman.judith@gmail.com with any questions.

-posted by Lily Robert-Foley