Yesterday, the APRIL Festival announced that Jenny Zhang will be the writer-in-residence of their next festival, which will take place the week of March 15—20, 2016. Zhang is the author, most recently, of the poetry collection Dear Jenny, We Are All Find. Unfamiliar with her work? Try this piece, which she published with Poetry magazine:
When someone dies, we go searching for poetry. When a new chapter of life starts or ends — graduations, weddings, inaugurations, funerals — we insist on poetry. The occasion for poetry is always a grand one, leaving us little people with our little lives bereft of elegies and love poems.
But I want elegies while I’m still alive, I want rhapsodies though I’ve never seen Mount Olympus. I want ballads, I want ugly, grating sounds, I want repetition, I want white space, I want juxtaposition and metaphor and meditation and ALL CAPS and erasure and blank verse and sonnets and even center-aligned italicized poems that rhyme, and most of all — feelings.
She has also written extensively for the wonderful Rookie magazine. You'll have plenty of opportunities to get acquainted with Zhang's work this spring; the writer-in-residence at APRIL participates in a number of readings and also writes about the festival as it happens. It's a great way to get a writer acquainted with Seattle, and vice versa.