Set on a remote island on the Maine coast, GHOST :: SEEDS incorporates elements of magical realism and myth to explore and trouble conceptions of gender and identity. The central tension of this book-length poem is a dialogue between a trans speaker and his “ghost,” the “girl-ghost” of the self that he left behind to become the man he is today. Putting a queer spin on the myth of Persephone, the girl-ghost speaks from underworld lit by glowworms, cut through by dark rivers, and connected to the world above through a sea cave. Alternating between prose-like elements and lyric meditations, the book’s expansive form makes full use of the page from margin to margin, creating space and breathing room for complicated investigations of memory, gender, and grief.
From “Remember the first time”
Remember the first time we realized
we could choose our own name?
The name that would become my name?
In college, we played with gender in the theater,
acted as Sebastian in Twelfth Night.
One night, after rehearsal, we told our friends,
Call me Sebastian, even when I’m not on the stage.
Over ten years since we found my name,
I’m still learning myself:
I grow my hair long for the first time
since I abandoned you.
About the Author
Published by Texas Review Press