Saturday 3 September 2022

Jaimie Gusman, "Anyjar"

Jaimie Gusman is a writer and ceramic artist living in Ka‘a‘awa on the island of Oahu. Jaimie earned her MFA in Poetry at the University of Washington and her PhD in Creative Writing at the University of Hawai‘i Mānoa. She is the founder of Mixing Innovative Arts, a reading series that ran from 2010-2019 in Honolulu. Her first book Anyjar was published in September 2017 by Black Radish Books. Jaimie is a recipient of the Rita Dove Poetry Award (2015) and the Ian MacMillan Prize (2012). She also has published three chapbooks: Gertrude's Attic (Vagabond Press, 2012), The Anyjar (Highway 101 Press, 2011), and One Petal Row (Tinfish Press, 2011). In 2020, Jaimie became the editor of Tinfish Press, an experimental poetry press dedicated to publishing work from the Pacific region. Her most recent writing can be found in The Feminist Wire, Black Warrior Review, and DIAGRAM.

About Anyjar

Marthe Reed writes: "Jaimie Gusman’s Anyjar navigates the proliferating forms of body, memory, and self, as the shores of the Anyjar approach and recede without warning. Who, where am I, the Anyjar asks, refusing a single perspective or form. A conch shell, the missing part, one’s heart, womb or nest, a child, death and loss, an incursion, a lament, an invisible sea—the complex matrix of making, artist-writer-animal-person. The instability of the Anyjar, its profligate forms, mirrors the dilemma of the poems’ speaker, who 'a two sea' is herself doubled. The reader finds herself loosed and multiplied, also, in the pages of this collection, the Anyjar as profligate as language itself. 'Memory is not practical but memory is practice.' All that body holds spills out, memory writing us into being, like the knit-work of DNA: Anyjar is a conch shell held to our ears speaking the fabric of (our) making." 

You can read more about Anyjar here. Below, you can read a poem from the collection. 

From Anyjar, by Jaimie Gusman

And like MAGIC Anyjar is Gone

Forgive me, he says, I took the Anyjar and buried it in snow until part of the glass froze and then I tried to break the Anyjar apart with an ax that was underneath the kitchen sink, which I discovered when rain caught the slate-stick and with one, two, twenty smashes the Anyjar wouldn’t budge, which meant that an ax wouldn’t do so I went to the bedroom where I found a chain-saw, revved the engine like a quake of earth and sawed the hell out of the Anyjar, but what happened next was disappointing because nothing shattered except my right knuckles and all bloody and in a bad mood I called a friend to help and the friend said I’ll do anything I can do anything to help a friend so the friend came over with very new rubber gloves and twisted the Anyjar until the friend’s hands looked like new hands but of course we thought if new hands wouldn’t do, any other hands would surely fail to open the Anyjar, so then I thought extremely hard about everything and we began to make a catapult from space and flung the Anyjar into the air but it boomeranged right back only to hit the friend in the anything-but-good eye so I ran to get some frozen peas and a patch, and then I got tired so I suggested that maybe the best thing to do was to go get a blanket (take the one the dog sleeps on) and drape it over the Anyjar and just like that I sighed and the Anyjar disappeared—so forgive me he says sorry again, it could be anywhere.

No comments:

Post a Comment