by Kirsten Kaschock
published May 2017 – Hybrid
About the Book:
Confessional Sci-Fi: A Primer is a book of in-between spaces and times. No one is quite what or where or when they seem to be. Each of the five prose-poetic pieces in the book has a narrative although it would be more difficult (though not impossible) to say each has a plot. Identity is interrogated here, but also community, and also the isolation that is unique to our current non-time—when our spheres of contact are more virtual than visceral.
In “Oh, Lorraine” a woman runs into the arms of an urban ruin to escape her marriage—maybe briefly, maybe for forever. In “A Bedroom Community Diary” a town is derailed by strangely antiquated (yet still prevalent) gender codes. In “The Fisherwoman’s Daughter” a young woman seeks a new life and finds all the little deaths. “After Museum” is a dream about loss and the fear of loss as accompanied by rollerskating and winged primates. Finally, “WindowBoxing” plumbs the rage that accompanies search and sorrow.
Kirsten Kaschock: “I hoped, in each of these small works, to find a way into the hidden places that no memoir or non-fiction work quite reaches in their slavish adherence to reality… the place where personal history intersects with phantasm and prophesy becomes probative.”
“Kaschock’s Confessional Sci-Fi: A Primer bravely crosses the rivers between genres to salvage the unpredictable and essential particulars of lived experience. We haunt the Divine Lorraine Hotel beside a speaker seeking to extract herself from the prefabricated narratives of family and gender. We hover inside an explosive abecedarian sequence. Throughout it all, we witness a dance comprised of sinew and wind, a mind unfettered by familiar architectures.”
About the Author
Kirsten Kaschock is the author of three poetry books: Unfathoms (Slope Editions 2004), A Beautiful Name for a Girl (Ahsahta Press 2011), and The Dottery (University of Pittsburgh Press 2014–winner of the AWP Donald Hall Award for poetry). Coffee House Press released her debut novel Sleight in 2011. She teaches at Drexel University and serves as editor-in-chief of thINKing DANCE, a consortium of dance writers in Philadelphia.
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