Poetry. LGBTQIA Studies. A new cross-genre collection that engages historical and personal explorations of gender and self. Aligned with queer theories of temporality, fragments of memoir rub against the language of psychiatric and medical regimes at the site of a body that does not conform to a gender binary. SOME ANIMAL draws out dream-like and supernatural resonances between the literature of pathology and experiences of gender dysphoria.
"Though steeped in Anglo-American poetry and literary theory, the book's first order of business is making sense of how it feels to be 'all alone inside // a riddle.' Shipley's sources are those of contemporary autobiography: visceral memories of sex and sex ed ('The classroom quiet. Rapt. Wrapped in gauze'), portentous dreams ('Pale bodies in S shapes slither and glide, slick over water-skin'), unshakeable pronouncements from family members ('Grandma lets out a long sigh, 'Well, then, if you're a boy,/ let's see your penis'). What sets this book apart is its focused attention to the experience of defying the gender binary, of being in a body that intimates and strangers alike are bent on denying. 'That's not a girl, that's a boy,' classmates say, in one dreamscape. 'Oh. No, wait: what is it?' Mining his own life and those of his queer kin, Shipley's book is one of hard truths, lovingly rendered."—Publishers Weekly
mica woods @ DIAGRAMPublishers WeeklyTimothy Stock @ Lambda Literary
Ely Shipley is the author of BOY WITH FLOWERS (2008), winner of the Barrow Street Press book prize and the Thom Gunn Award, as well as SOME ANIMAL (Nightboat Books, 2018). He teaches at Western Washington University.Author City: BOTHELL, WA USA