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Almanac of Useless Talents (Paperback)
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Fence poetry editor and rising star Michael Chang's Almanac of Useless Talents is a must-read for poetry lovers and newbies alike. This is a useless Almanac. There's no seasonal data, only poems good for leaving the club in haute couture with mid-level poets, for ambiguous sex, mouthy seductions, shoulder-turns of cold cock disrespect.
Part confessional, part experimental, and completely original, Chang is a poet read in classrooms and on phone screens with equal fervor. Each poem deftly deforms self into outrageous performance. This poetry snaps and twists so fast you'll miss things: the intricate formal craft, the bitchy wordplay. A dopamine rush delving into desire's throbbing networks of flesh and circuit, identity, relationships, Aznness, queerdom, and more that would arouse Ashbery envy, Chang's playful style is edgy, surprising, and delightful. In Chang's world, sentiment is d cor: come face the amusing ever-ache of our desires or go ahead and try to outrun them.
About the Author
MICHAEL CHANG (they/them) is the author of several collections of poetry, including BOYFRIEND PERSPECTIVE (Really Serious Literature, 2021) & the forthcoming SYNTHETIC JUNGLE (Northwestern University Press, 2023). Tapped to edit Lambda Literary's Emerge anthology, their poems have been nominated for Best New Poets, Best of the Net, & the Pushcart Prize. They were awarded the Poetry Project's prestigious Brannan Prize in 2021, & serve as a poetry editor at the acclaimed journal Fence.