Poetry. Art. With ABOUT TO BE YOUNG, Lawrence sets out to write the most emotional poetry that he can. The poems deploy plain language, grammatical torque, and organic visual forms to investigate issues of memory, family, queer sexuality, and shame. Throughout the sequence, he takes the poet John Wieners's injunction that he must write "the most embarrassing thing" as a rule, and indulge in the absolute lyric impulse to be plangent—to cringe and sing.
Monroe Lawrence was born in Campbell River, Canada on unceded Coast Salish lands. He grew up in Squamish, British Columbia, lived in Vancouver, and now resides in Pawtucket, Rhode Island, on ancestral Narragansett and Wampanoag lands. A one-time Canadian National Champion for cross-country mountain biking, he traveled in 2016 to Lyssarea, Greece, to watch Gregory Markoupolos's 80hr film, Eniaios. In 2019 he received the Person of the Year award at Curry College. His writing has been published in Best American Experimental Writing, The Capilano Review, The Brooklyn Review, Flag + Void, Prelude Mag, and in a chapbook, Nice, with L.A.S.E.R. Press. ABOUT TO BE YOUNG (The Elephants, 2021) is his first book. Author City: PAWTUCKET, RI USA