Thursday May 23

Nickole Brown is the author of Sister, a novel-in-poems published by Red Hen Press. She graduated from the M.F.A. Program at the Vermont College of Fine Arts and has received grants from the National Endowment for the Arts, the Kentucky Foundation for Women, and the Kentucky Arts Council. She also co-edited the anthology, Air Fare: Stories, Poems, & Essays on Flight, published in 2004. She has served as the National Publicity Consultant for the Palm Beach Poetry Festival, as well as the Program Coordinator for the VCFA writing residency in Slovenia.
Nickole worked at the nonprofit, independent, literary press, Sarabande Books, for ten years.  She currently lives in Louisville, Kentucky, where she is a Lecturer at Bellarmine University and the University of Louisville. She is also on the faculty at the low-residency MFA program at Murray State, is the Co-editor for the Marie Alexander Poetry Series at White Pine Press, and works as the National Publicity Consultant for Arktoi Books.
Although my eclectic, downright motley taste in poetry was a challenge as I pared down the selections for this issue of Connotations Press: An Online Artifact, it was an absolute pleasure to take this month to solicit and discover work from poets that I’ve admired for years. Here, you’ll find a true mix of the most inimitable, unfamiliar work I could find—poems that vary greatly in form and aesthetic but that all have that impossible-to-define quality of (to give a wink to Whitman and his boys) adhesiveness, a quality that isn’t necessarily named or even nameable, that certain something makes a poem “stick.”
I also have here a mix of poets in terms of career. For the talented young poet Cristián Flores, this is her debut publication, and another up-and-coming writer, Ellen Hagan, has her first book forthcoming within the year. I am, of course, happy to present some well-known favorites, including Ralph Angel, Ilya Kaminsky, and Eleanor Lerman, as well as several others. For fun, I’ve also included a collaborative poem by Simone Muench and Philip Jenks that still has me in a lyrical swoon, and I’m particularly excited by Oliver de la Paz’s new series of poems, four of which are featured here with a short interview from him discussing that work.