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The Waves presents: 'The Queer South'

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Press Street is proud to host another installment of The Waves, one of the fastest-growing and most popular queer reading series in the nation, for an event at 7 p.m. on Thursday, Jan. 22, at the Press Street HQ (3718 St. Claude Ave.).

This event celebrates the release of The Queer South: LGBTQ Writers on the American South, edited by Douglas Ray. The new anthology, published by Sibling Rivalry Press, features poetry and prose that sings of and explores the queer experience of the American South. The evening will be hosted by The Waves founders, Brad Richard and Elizabeth Gross.

On hand that night will be a group of writers from throughout the region included in the book, a multifarious extravaganza of queer talent who will offer a wide array of voices and perspectives … and party and celebrate The Queer South.

Featured among the readers will be Jericho Brown, a recipient of the Whiting Writers’ Award and fellowships from the Radcliffe Institute at Harvard and the National Endowment for the Arts. The Shreveport, Louisiana, native’s poems have appeared in The New Yorker, The Nation, The New Republic, and The Best American Poetry as well as Nikki Giovanni’s 100 Best African American Poems. Brown holds a Ph.D. from the University of Houston, an MFA from the University of New Orleans, and a BA from Dillard University. His first book, Please, won the American Book Award. His most recent book, The New Testament, was published by Copper Canyon Press. He is an assistant professor in the creative writing program at Emory University in Atlanta.

The bios for the evening’s remaining readers—a whopping 10 in all!—are listed under the image. Maple Street Book Shop will be on hand with copies of The Queer South and other titles.

The evening’s presenters, clockwise spiral, from top left: Jericho Brown, Brad Richard, Liana Roux, Foster Noone, Ellen Goldstein, Ken Pobo, Eddie Outlaw, Elizabeth Gross, Hannah Riddle, and Laurence Ross.

The evening’s presenters, clockwise spiral, from top left: Jericho Brown, Brad Richard, Liana Roux, Foster Noone, Ellen Goldstein, Ken Pobo, Eddie Outlaw, Elizabeth Gross, Hannah Riddle, and Laurence Ross.

Ellen Goldstein was born in Charlottesville, Virginia. Her work has appeared in journals such as Poetry Southeast, StorySouth, Measure, The Common, and Post Road; and in the anthologies Rough Places Plain: Poems for Mountains, Not Quite What I was Planning, Letters to the World, and Bloomsbury Anthology of Contemporary Jewish American Poetry.

Elizabeth Gross landed again, on her feet this time, in New Orleans. Her dreams are still peopled by friends in New York, though, and she left part of her spine in Prague. Her poems have appeared in Tuba, LEVELER, Painted Bride Quarterly, B O D Y, and the anthology This assignment is so gay: LGBTIQ Poets On the Art of Teaching. She currently teaches literature and writing for Bard Early College in New Orleans.

Foster Noone is a student and queer community organizer from Pelham, Alabama, currently studying public health at Tulane University. Hir contribution to The Queer South is his first published work.

Eddie Outlaw is a Mississippi native and lives in Jackson, Mississippi, where he and his husband own William Wallace Salon and Fondren Barber Shop. The couple is the subject of “A Mississippi Love Story,” a documentary short. Eddie is a columnist for Jackson Press and blogs about being gay in the South.

Ken Pobo has a new book of poems forthcoming from Blue Light Press called Bend of Quiet. In 2013 Eastern Point Press published a chapbook of his poetry called Placemats. His work has appeared in Indiana Review, Nimrod, Mudfish, Hawaii Review, and elsewhere. He teaches creative writing and English at Widener University.

Brad Richard is author of the poetry books Habitations; Motion Studies, winner of the 2010 Washington Prize and finalist for the 2011 Thom Gunn Award for Gay Poetry; and Butcher’s Sugar, as well as two chapbooks, The Men in the Dark and Curtain Optional (the latter published by Press Street). Winner of the 2002 Poets & Writers, Inc., Writers Exchange Award in poetry and recipient of fellowships from the Surdna Foundation and the Louisiana Division of the Arts, he chairs the creative writing program at Lusher Charter School in New Orleans.

Hannah Riddle is a native of North Carolina and a graduate of the Creative Writing program at UNC-Chapel Hill. She is the recipient of the Suzanne Bolch Prize and the Ann Williams Burrus/Academy of American Poets prize. Her poems have appeared in Cellar Door and Ink.

Laurence Ross lives in New Orleans, where he is at work on a book-length project concerning the lives and deaths of our cultural spectacles. In addition to publishing his writing in literary journals, he is a frequent contributor to Pelican Bomb, a regional publication dedicated to the Louisiana arts community.

Liana Roux teaches high school English in North Carolina. She has a B.A. in English and anthropology and an M.A.T. from UNC-Chapel Hill, where she received the Blanche Armfield Prize for Poetry. Her work has appeared in Cellar Door.

This article was originally published by Press Street: Room 220, a NolaVie content partner.