Kristin Prevallet’s Online Workshop: Embodied Narratives



Embodied Narratives
Four writing workshops to explore poetically expansive trance states.

FOUR SATURDAYS in SEPTEMBER 9/6; 9/13; 9/20; 9/27: 11amPST/2pmEST

admission $100-150 sliding scale for four two-hour workshops

The narratives that have been constructed and popularized around Past Life Regression, Time-line Alteration, the Akashic Records, and Chakra clearing have led people into wild dream and trance states where neurochemical and biological healing processes are activated. For writers and artists, following these narrative threads might awaken characters and plots, or unlock elliptical poetic processes useful for the generation of new work; for spiritual/soul seekers, the narratives might unlock larger experiences of expanded consciousness, co-existence, and interconnection. For anyone looking explore the silver cloud of heightened consciousness through writing, this is a class that will stimulate your parasympathetic nervous system and lead you towards the inner knowledge of self-healing. If out of this class you write a few amazing poems or stories, that’s terrific; if you (among other things) learn how to overcome emotional blocks, deal with pain in a new way, and take action to change the catastrophic future, that’s the learning of an embodied poetics that can last a lifetime.

Kristin Prevallet is a poet, essayist, teacher, and the founder of the Center for Mindbody Studies with a private hypnosis practice in New York City. She is a certified consulting hypnotist through the National Guild of Hypnotists and an integral health coach certified through the International Association of Counselors and Therapists. The author of five books of poetry, she is also the author of three non-fiction books about poetics and the unconscious mind: Trance Poetics: Your Writing Mind, You, Resourceful: Return To Who You Want To Be and Visualize Comfort: Pain Management and the Unconscious Mind. She is the 2014 Poet’s House Fellows Mentor-in-Residence, an associate of Bard College’s Institute for Writing and thinking, and a Writer-in-Residence at Spalding University.

Please email

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SPT SWAG: T-shirts! T-shirts!

Wear your SPT pride with our cozy t-shirts designed by poet Jennifer Manzano!

Only $20 each, these super-cool additions to your swift sartorial game are available in size XS to XXL and support the ongoing programming at Small Press Traffic.

Click the button below to get your swag on!


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Drink in the glory of ENDLESS SUMMER

What are you doing this summer?

On June 21, SPT is going to kick-off summer with a reading marathon
party on the longest day of the year and we hope you’ll be a part of

Endless Summer
12 p.m. to 12 a.m., Saturday, June 21
With special thanks to our gracious hosts, Juliana Spahr, Bill Luoma,
and Charles Weigl who have opened their home in Berkeley for our

Come on out and help support one of the Bay Area’s most vital
literary organizations! Since 1974 Small Press Traffic has been at
the heart of the San Francisco Bay Area innovative writing scene
bringing together readers, writers, and independent presses through
an influential reading series, publications, conferences, and talks.
We are proud to promote and support local, national, and
international writers who push the limits of how we speak, write, and
think about the world.

In the midst of our 40th year of programming, we are so excited to
announce our third-annual fundraising marathon extravaganza!

Please join us!

For tickets visit: Your $20 will admit you, feed you, hydrate you and help support
another year of SPT programming!

Alan Bernheimer
Alana Seigel
Alexandra Mattraw
Alli Warren
Angie Hume
Anne Lesley Selcer
Brandon Brown
Brenda Hillman
Brittany Wasen
Caroline O’Conner Thomas
Caroline Knapp
Carrie Hunter
Chloe Veylit
Claire Lewis
Dan Fisher
David Buuck
David Lau
Del Rey Cross
Denise Newman
Dillon Westbrook
Drew Cushing
Elizabeth Treadwell
Emji Spero
Erika Staiti
Evan Karp
Evan Schnair
Frances Richard
Genine Lentine
Geraldine Kim
Gillian Connoly
Gloria Frym
Hazel White
Jeff Chon
Jess Heaney
Jessie Sandoval
Jill Tydor
Jocelyn Saidenberg
Johnny Hernandez
Joshua Clover
Juliana Spahr
Kate Haskell
Kathleen Frumpkin
Katrina Rodebaugh
Kit Robinson
Kit Schluter
Krista Valera
Laura Moriarty
Laurel deCou
Lauren Shufran
Loretta Clodfelter
Lourdes Figueroa
Lyn Hejinian
Marrianne Morris
Melissa Mack
MG Roberts
Michael Cross
Michael Sakoda
Michael Nicoloff
Oki Sogumi
Rebecca Farivar
Robin Tremblay-McGaw
Samantha Giles
Sara Wintz
Sarah Anne Cox
Sarah Heady
Sean Labrador Manzano
Sean Patrick Negus
Stephanie Young
Stephen Novatny
Steve Dickison
Steve Farmer
Susan Gevirtz
Taylor Brady
Tessa Micaela
Tiffany Higgins
Trevor Calvert
Valerie Witte
Zach Houston
and more to come!
(If you’re interested in reading at the event, please email Samantha
Giles at

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SPT SWAG: The Feeling is Mutual

The Feeling is Mutual: A List of Our Fucking Demands continues to be available  for a small donation of $10 (the price of lunch these days!), we’ll send you this beautifully produced anthology, edited by Michael Cross & Sara Wintz and designed by Stephen Novotny and Michael Cross (printed letterpress on the Heidelberg).

The contributors responded to the following prompt from Sara Wintz:

“+hey: what do you want?+

-a partner?
-a baby?
-an end to capitalism?
-a job that <3s you?
-a family that <3s you?
-free healthcare?
-student loan forgiveness?
-to be able to get married?
-a government that pays for art?
-an audience/readership?
-a bike?
-a chicken coop?

let’s try to write it out, take a picture of it, draw a picture of it, journal about it… and then let’s make a book out of our unique and special demands.”

The list of contributors include Jamie Townsend, Andrew Kenower, Zack Tuck, Lauren Levin, Dan Thomas Glass, Anne Lesley Selcer, David Buuck, Alana Seigel, Alli Warren, Paul Ebenkamp, Cassie Smith, and many, many others.

This is a GREAT WAY to support SPT from afar!  GET IT NOW and support your local literary organization! Just click the button below to start the journey to happiness!

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Anne Boyer’s Online Workshop!


JUNE 8th, 15th, 22nd &29th:

admission $100-150
sliding scale for four three-hour workshops
Each class will be held online through a video conferencing website.

CLASS DESCRIPTION: Insurgent Alchemy

This is a course in the poetics of alchemical insurgency and the insurgent alchemical. How do we take what we have been given and turn it into what we need? What do we do with what we need when it arrives to us?

By the end, we will have made work in the obsessively subjunctive: transmuting texts, investigatory desiring, clearing and reconstituting, diamond gleaning and trash eating, hanging out and exploring temporal dislocations, describing what-probably-is, what-really-shouldn’t-be, what-might-have-been, and also what-might-as-well-be. As Isabelle says in Born in Flames, “It begins in the celebration of the rites of alchemy: the transformation of shit into gold.”

Anne Boyer is a poet.  Her works include Anne Boyer’s Good Apocalypse, The Romance of Happy Workers, Money City Sick as Fuck, The 2000s, My Common Heart, and more. She is an Assistant Professor of the Liberal Arts at the Kansas City Art Institute.

Please email

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40×40@40: Szymaszek on Blackburn

Stacy Szymaszek

The Journals

Paul Blackburn

Black Sparrow Press 1975



Sometimes one word can ritually spark the same association. When I hear the noun “grackles,” I think of Paul Blackburn’s poem “BIRDS / AMSTERDAM” in his last book The Journals. When I see grackles, or rather, am present enough to notice them, because they are everywhere, I think of Blackburn. I don’t know why that word, that bird. There are gulls, ducks and pigeons in that poem too – even a stork as in “Where are the storks?” “Grackles” is not a beautiful word and not a bird-lovers bird. Blackburn makes music of it by placing it near words like “carpark” and “taxi,” “blackened” and “attacked.” City words and city birds. The “Amsterdam” in the poem is in Holland not the New Amsterdam where St. Mark’s Church-in-the-Bowery stands on Petrus Stuyvesant’s farm. When I first encountered this book, I lived in Milwaukee and worked at Woodland Pattern Book Center. I couldn’t have fathomed that I would one day run The Poetry Project at St. Mark’s that Blackburn is the “subtle father” of. Moving to NYC, I took this lineage to heart and reread The Journals, my guide through the transition that was about to take place in my writing, best described by Robert Kelly as (Blackburn’s) “paradigm of the processual.” Or, poems as daily improv. Yes, he’s “the one who most allowed his life and work to intertwine…” (Kelly) – as well as his death and his work. He wrote most of the entries in The Journals with the knowledge that his illness was terminal. He documents his skinny doomed body soaking in the tub, waiting for a shoulder ache to go away just as he would document drinking a cup of coffee. He “loved to see” (Kelly), even giving us these descriptions of his physical decline. This book is a joyous farewell in the form of the most open “honest in ear” (Kelly, again) poetry I have yet to encounter.



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APRIL 27, 2014 at 5pm
at Artist Television Access

hosted by former SPT Director Dodie Bellamy

doors open at 5/event at 5:30p/
admission $6-10
no one turned away for lack of funds
members free

Lisa Robertson’s new long poem, Cinema of the Present, is coming out with Coach House Books in Fall 2014. This spring she is the Bain Swiggett Lecturer in Poetry at Princeton University. Her essay on Aby Warburg, Johanes Kepler, Thomas Carlyle, and the dynamic figure of the ellipse, Thinking Space, was just published as a chapbook by Organization for Poetic Research in New York. She lives in France.

Jeff Derksen is a writer and member of the English faculty at SFU.  He is the editor of Line magazine, and a founding member of Vancouver’s artist-run centre, the Kootenay School of Writing.His books of poetry include Down Time (winner of the 1991 Dorothy Livesay Poetry Award), Dwell (1994), andTransnational Muscle Cars (2003).  A collection of essays, Annihilated Time: Poetry and Politics was published in 2009 andThe Vestiges (2014).

Dodie Bellamy is a novelist, poet, and essayist. Her Ugly Duckling chapbook Barf Manifesto was named best book of 2009 under 30 pages by Time Out New York. Other books include the buddhist, Academonia, PinkSteam, The Letters of Mina Harker, and Cunt-Ups, which won the 2002 Firecracker Alternative Book Award for poetry. Recent projects include Cunt Norton (Les Figues, 2013), in which she takes the second edition of the Norton Anthology of Poetry and sexualizes it in the language of porn and desire; New Narrative: 1975-1995, a Nightboat Books anthology she’s editing with Kevin Killian; and When the Sick Rule the World, her third collection of essays, forthcoming from Semiotext(e). Her reflections on the Occupy Oakland movement, The Beating of Our Hearts, has been published as chapbook in conjunction with the 2014 Whitney Biennial. Her newest book, The TV Sutras, will be released by Ugly Duckling Presse in May 2014.


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40×40@40: C.S. Giscombe on John Keene

C. S. Giscombe
John Keene and Christopher Stackhouse
1913 Press, 2006
Seismosis, John Keene’s collaboration with Christopher Stackhouse, moves and moves in more than direction.  From the title—which suggests the motion of earth and the motion of liquid—onward the book celebrates mix.  As the back of the book tells us, the text samples work from a variety of writers and performers (Guy Davenport, Leonardo da Vinci, DJ Spooky, Charles Olson, Marjorie Perloff, and Cecil Taylor, among others) and here, in that act, is the mix of languages that makes poetry—here Keene and Stackhouse have taken their collaboration outward and, in so doing, have brought the world into it.  The very end of the book, the one-line poem called “Process,” is signal and also, playfully, serves a summary function—“In the mark we choose and lose signature.”  The text of the book, I would argue, has very much to do with signature; that is, the concern here seems to be with acknowledging limits or borders and then crossing them or, perhaps more to the point, “showing the work” of crossing borders.  An early poem in the book, “Azimuth,” begins, “With respect to true north, each angle.”  The poem continues to offer respect (the phrase, “with respect,” repeats) and then (in each instance of the repetition) dissent.  But the dissent becomes part of the marvelously unwieldy whole and the poem ends, “With respect/ to result, no values are refuted.”  (And the next poem, which follows pages of drawings, reiterates this in its two final lines: “… Always an edge towards true being/ mingling all expression, becoming anew.”)  There are many restatements of this through the book but I’m wanting to highlight one that comes two thirds of the way in (on page 65), the poem, “Folds”—“What follows reconstruction, continuous after rupture.  What/ follows: architecture and layering, the vibrating definition.  In the interstices, what comes after our/ intimate games.”  Here I feel the book coming again not to “a still but not deep center” (Roethke) but to a statement (via re-statement) of its collaborative project.  I’m struck, throughout the book, by the play of collaboration. The book seems to me to be an examination of what collaboration might look like if it crossed borders.  And here, in Seismosis, with its implicit ruptures of earth’s crust and violations of membranes, borders are being crossed.
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Online Class for April: Erica Kaufman’s Poem as Prosthesis & Pedagogy

Join us this April for Erica Kaufman’s online class: Poem as Prosthesis & Pedagogy

4 Sundays in April (April 6-28)

5pm-8pm EST/2-5pm PST


There was something amazing about watching Daft Punk walk the red carpet in their tuxedos and spectacular “robot helmets” at this year’s Grammy Awards. Even the “fashion cam” seemed at a loss for words.  What makes the helmets so jarring? This is nothing new—Daft Punk is known for their discovery that they are actually “robots in human bodies in robot costumes.” Increasingly, the joining of man and machine is almost routine—as N. Katherine Hayles writes in “How We Think,” “…the more the keyboard comes to seem an extension of one’s thoughts rather than an external device on which one types.”

In this class we’ll “embrace the machine,” so to speak—writing against, over, and through the virtual, versatile, fictional, animal, cyborgian, internalized, prosthetic. We will play with a variety of procedural and chance-based approaches to writing, keeping in mind the idea of the “prosthesis” as an “addition” (not a “replacement”), and consider the pedagogies these “operations” produce.

We’ll work with a wide range of texts—from J. Jack Halbertstam, Donna Haraway and Elizabeth Grosz…to…Ann Lauterbach, Fred Moten, Eileen Myles, Anselm Berrigan, Joan Retallack, John Cage…to… Gregory Ulmer, Marshall McLuhan, Walter Ong…

Each class session will be part discussion, part invention, part crowd sourcing knowledge, part workshop and form. At the end of our four weeks, we will all have a new toolbox full of procedures and prompts to generate new work, as well as new avatars to turn to as we move through the day.


erica kaufman is the author of INSTANT CLASSIC (Roof Books, 2013) and censory impulse (Factory School, 2009). she is also the co-editor of NO GENDER: Reflections on the Life and Work of kari edwards. Prose and critical work can be found in: Rain Taxi, The Poetry Project Newsletter, Jacket2, Open Space/SFMOMA Blog and in The Color of Vowels: New York School Collaborations (ed. Mark Silverberg, Palgrave MacMillan, 2013). she is the Associate Director of the Institute for Writing & Thinking at Bard College.

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40×40@40: Ted Rees on Dennis Cooper

Idols by Dennis Cooper

SeaHorse Press, 1979

I couldn’t get up from my chair because I had a gigantic erection.

Dennis Cooper was a name I’d heard again and again by the time I was in my final semester at Oberlin, but I’d never given his work any of my time until I stumbled upon his book Idols in the stacks of gay literature at the school’s immense, vaginal, Brutalist main library. The cover of the thin volume, featuring the slickened back and cushy ass of some young Adonis, looked pleasant enough. At the check-out desk, I felt a bit like I did when I bought copies of XY at the local Borders when I was a young teenager— exposed and sheepish, titillated yet ashamed, though I was already a well-known homosexual by the end of my time in college. My physical and emotional sensations did not correspond to my status, which unsettled me further.

But I sat down in the main student study area anyway, cracked the laminate spine open— it was clear the book hadn’t been checked out in years— and began to read.

By the time I got to the poem titled Mike Robarts (page from a porno novel I wrote at sixteen), I could feel my cock swelling against my bikini briefs. I was only a few pages in, but felt like I’d been reading for eons. It was an experience akin to waiting for gay porn to appear on my parents’ dial-up internet connection as a high-school student, masturbating as idiotic-looking twinks slowly materialized on the oversized screen of a Compaq Presario.

Mike Robarts shuttled my desire towards peak:

“I said to Mike he was beautiful. He looked embarassed and said not to be weird.” I remember an incident when I was with my friend Josh in his room when we were around 13. Somehow dick sizes and sexual stuff came up, and I put my hand on his thigh, and smiled at him, which sent him screaming.

Things between us were never really the same after that, and it marked my first realization that there was no way I could just approach my objects of desire so casually, or as casually as I was wont, at least until I was older.

“Stan grabbed him and held him against me, his head steady, and I licked all over his face [...]

I ran my hand down into the front of his trunks and pushed them off. I felt him there and squeezed his balls.”

Perhaps my teenage dream of taking revenge on all of the beautiful boys who ostracized me was not necessarily typical, because I never really wanted to kill any of them, just have sex with them. (Yes, I was one of the weird boys who lingered too long in the locker room, gazing longingly at milky thighs and butts and abdomens, mostly when their owners couldn’t notice me doing so).

Of course, though, Cooper’s narrator and his friend Stan drown Mike. “I carried him to the pool deck and kissed his dead mouth and put my cock up his cool quiet ass again and again. I told myself I was glad I was drunk.” My mouth slightly agape, my dick erupted from my briefs and pulsating against my left thigh, I had to read the sentences a few more times. I worried for a few moments that I might be a necrophiliac, and felt pathetic, then sad. Then I put the book down, waited a few more moments, and went to one of the usually-abandoned third-floor bathrooms of the library. The orgasm was probablyone of the better solo efforts I ever achieved.

What remains important for me about Cooper’s book is not only that it led me to Bataille and Jean-Luc Nancy (among others), but that it taught me that a small piece of writing can allow for a complex and multitudinous and simultaneous outpouring from the head and the heart and the loins.

While I had suspected as such before sitting down with Idols, it was the first book that evidenced this more holistic unity to me. I readily admit my work bares little to no resemblance to Cooper’s, but the lesson imparted by my first encounter with his oeuvre remains one of the most important to my own ideas of what I think writing should do.

Sorry, third floor bathroom stall, and an extra sorry to the kid shitting in the stall next to mine.

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