Come join us for Word is Bond #7! Attendance is FREE but suggested donations will benefit Deep South Decrim, an initiative that works to end the criminalization and abuse of sex workers through harm reduction and decriminalization. DSD is run by Women With a Vision, a New Orleans-based organization that seeks to improve the lives of marginalized women, their families, and communities by addressing the social conditions that hinder their health and well-being through relentless advocacy, health education, supportive services, and community-based participatory research. If you have the means, please consider sparing what you’re able. If not, come share space with us anyway. Your presence is the most essential part of community, and you are all essential at Word is Bond despite and because of your circumstances—we keep us safe.
Featuring readings from Ross Gay, Khadijah Queen, Ruth Awad, & Joy Priest. Co-hosted & co-curated by Adele Elise Williams. Organized in partnership with the Asian American Writers’ Workshop. Design direction by Christopher Lehr. Hosted by Anthony Thomas Lombardi.
If you are unable to attend but still wish to contribute, consider donating whatever is in your means, & most importantly, spread the word!
Ross Gay is interested in joy.
Ross Gay wants to understand joy.
Ross Gay is curious about joy.
Ross Gay studies joy.
Something like that.
Ruth Awad is a 2021 NEA Poetry Fellow and the author of Set to Music a Wildfire (Southern Indiana Review Press, 2017), winner of the 2016 Michael Waters Poetry Prize and the 2018 Ohioana Book Award for Poetry. Alongside Rachel Mennies, she is the co-editor of The Familiar Wild: On Dogs & Poetry (Sundress Publications, 2020). She is the recipient of a 2020 and 2016 Ohio Arts Council Individual Excellence Award. Her work appears in Poetry, Poem-a-Day, The Believer, The New Republic, Kenyon Review, Pleiades, The Missouri Review, The Rumpus, and elsewhere.
Joy Priest is the author of HORSEPOWER (Pitt Poetry Series, 2020), selected by U.S. Poet Laureate Natasha Trethewey as the winner of the Donald Hall Prize for Poetry. She is the recipient of a 2021 National Endowment for the Arts fellowship, a 2019-2020 Fine Arts Work Center fellowship, and the Stanley Kunitz Memorial Prize from the American Poetry Review. Her poems have appeared or are forthcoming in the Academy of American Poets’ Poem-a-Day series, The Atlantic, and Kenyon Review, among others, as well as in commissions for the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston (MFAH) and the Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA). Priest has facilitated poetry workshops with incarcerated juvenile and adult women, and she is currently editing an anthology of Louisville poets for Sarabande.
Khadijah Queen is the author of six books, most recently Anodyne (Tin House 2020), winner of the William Carlos Williams Award from the Poetry Society of America. Her fifth book is I’m So Fine: A List of Famous Men & What I Had On (YesYes Books 2017), praised in O Magazine, The New Yorker, Rain Taxi, and elsewhere as “quietly devastating” and “a portrait of defiance that turns the male gaze inside out.” Her verse play Non-Sequitur (Litmus Press 2015) won the Leslie Scalapino Award for Innovative Women’s Performance Writing. The award included a full production at Theaterlab in New York City, directed by Fiona Templeton. A hybrid essay about the pandemic, “False Dawn,” appeared in Harper’s Magazine in 2020. She holds a PhD in English and Literary Arts from University of Denver and is an Associate Professor teaching creative writing, literature and poetics at Virginia Tech.
Adele Elise Williams is a writer, editor, and educator pursuing her PhD in Literature and Creative Writing at The University of Houston where she serves as the Nonfiction Editor for Gulf Coast. Adele is the winner of the 2019 Emily Morrison Poetry Prize and 2022 Inprint Donald Barthelme Prize for Poetry as well as the recipient of fellowships from UCROSS, Inprint, and Hindman Settlement School. Selected work can be found or is forthcoming in Air/Light, The Florida Review, Guernica, Cream City Review, Split Lip Magazine, The Adroit Journal, Quarterly West, Beloit Poetry Journal, and elsewhere. Her current goings-on can be found at adeleelisewilliams.com.
Anthony Thomas Lombardi is a Pushcart-nominated poet, organizer, activist, and educator. He is the founder and director of Word is Bond, a community-centered reading series partnered with the Asian American Writers’ Workshop that raises funds for transnational relief efforts, bail funds, and mutual aid organizations, and currently serves as assistant poetry editor for Sundog Lit. A recipient of the Poetry Project’s Emerge-Surface-Be Fellowship, his work has appeared or will soon in the Poetry Foundation’s Ours Poetica, Guernica, Black Warrior Review, Gulf Coast, Colorado Review, Denver Quarterly, Massachusetts Review, North American Review, and elsewhere. He lives in Brooklyn with his cat, Dilla.
Ross Gay, Khadijah Queen, Ruth Awad, Joy Priest, Adele Elise Williams, Anthony Thomas Lombardi