I am thrilled to continue my Spellbook Saturday series for the month of June in celebration of Pride! As a bisexual white woman I am in the very privileged position of being open, comparatively safe, and celebrated in my identity, an experience not afforded to all in the queer community. This is not to say that I have not experienced anti-queer sentiments and “othering,” both personally and as an individual living in a deeply patriarchal and heternormative society. As such, throughout the years I have found incredible solace and inspiration in the work of LGBTQIA2S+ writers, a few of whom I am happy to share with you over the coming month.

Continuing the series, today’s feature is not focused on a specific book, but a beloved writer: Eileen Myles. To condense Myles’s work and impact into a quick blog post feels almost futile. From their website: “Eileen Myles (they/them) came to New York from Boston in 1974 to be a poet. Their 22 books include For Now (an essay/talk about writing), I Must Be Living Twice/new and selected poems, and Chelsea Girls. They showed their photographs in 2019 at Bridget Donahue, NYC. Eileen has received a Guggenheim Fellowship and an award from the American Academy of Arts & Letters. They live in New York and Marfa, TX.”

I remember vividly the first time that I discovered Myles’s poetry, that live-wire feeling of surprise and awe— while I have long been a fan of poetry, and found certain the work of certain poets deeply moving, rarely had I felt so seen. It was truly an awakening, and while their body of work is astounding, and I Must Be Living Twice shows a depth and maturity garnered only through time, I will forever cherish Maxfield Parish for being that first introduction to their work.

Do you have a favorite LGBTQIA+ poet? What has your experience been like with queer representation in the world of poetry? Share your thoughts in the comments!



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