Joyelle McSweeney

Joyelle McSweeney is the author of ten books of poetry, stories, novels, essays, translations and plays, including, most recently, the poetry double-volume Toxicon and Arachne (Nightboat Books, 2020) and The Necropastoral: Poetry, Media, Occults, a work of decadent ecopoetics (University of Michigan Poets on Poetry series, 2015). Her debut poetry volume, The Red Bird, inaugurated the Fence Modern Poets Series in 2001, while her verse play, Dead Youth, or the Leaks, inaugurated the Leslie Scalapino Prize for Innovative Women Performance Artists in 2014. With Carmen Maria Machado, she was the guest editor of Best American Experimental Writing 2020. She also collaborated with Don Mee Choi on translations of two short stories by Korean modernist Yi Sang, featured in Yi Sang: Selected Works from Wave Books alongside translations by Jack Jung and Sawako Nakayasu (2020). Her poem ‘Post-NICU Villanelle’, was published in the Iowa Review and is the recipient of a 2021 Pushcart prize. With Johannes Göransson, she co-edits the international press Action Books and teaches at Notre Dame.

‘Energy is Art’s force’: Dan Disney in Conversation with Joyelle McSweeney

‘In a station of the vortex pick me up and hurl me’ writes Joyelle McSweeney in the poem ‘Oocyte’, appearing in their celebrated collection Toxicon and Arachne (Nightboat Books, 2020). In this heady exchange of ideas, the author of ten books (poetry, fiction, drama, non-fiction, translation) reveals a formidable erudition swirls through the heartlands of their elemental writing.

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like a star who snuffs out its own path like a tsar who wears a many-beaméd trinket on his chest like a target for a Taser or a laser -guided stent quasaring throb that knocks the breast of the ocean-going …

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