WATCH: Paul Tran and Yanyi on Bringing the Unnameable into Form
Hosted by Greenlight Bookstore
In keeping with our tradition and devotion to showcasing the most prescient, urgent, exciting voices in contemporary poetry,
Greenlight welcomes electrifying, award-winning slam poet Paul Tran for the launch of their first collection, All the Flowers Kneeling. The first Asian American since 1993—and first transgender poet ever—to win the Nuyorican Poets Cafe Grand Slam, Tran’s poems employ deceptively simple forms to investigate intergenerational trauma, sexual violence, and US imperialism in order to radically alter our understanding of freedom, power, and control. These “searching, generous poems that enact the resilience of the human spirit, how the art of language making—story, truth telling—allows us not only to survive but thrive” (Natasha Trethewey) render the complex nonlinearity of survival and healing, testifying all throughout to the power of resilience and love.
Acclaimed poet and critic Yanyi (The Year of Blue Water) joins Tran as interviewer and interlocutor for a conversation that dives deeply into the work of bringing the unnameable into form, of transforming and transmuting pain and the past, and of all the questions of writing which are also questions of living.
Founded in October 2009 by Rebecca Fitting and Jessica Stockton Bagnulo, Greenlight Bookstore is an independent bookstore in Brooklyn, New York. Combining the best traditions of the neighborhood bookstore with carefully curated, community-minded events, Greenlight has earned a reputation as a literary destination. Greenlight has continued to serve its community during the COVID-19 pandemic with a diverse array of virtual events, and has been inspired by the movements for racial justice across the country to engage in the work of becoming a more anti-racist company. Learn more at greenlightbookstore.com or check them out @greenlightbklyn.