Spartan Press of Kansas City has published the latest book of poetry by Denise Low, Kansas Poet Laureate 2007-09. A Casino Bestiary continues Denise Low’s exploration of the frontier West, what it means for Indigenous and settler citizens, its myths and boundaried realities. This is the most personal of Low’s books, full of wit, sting, surprise. Copies are available at the Raven Bookstore in Lawrence and on Amazon and Barnes & Noble
Thanks to Kevin Rabas, poet laureate of Kansas, for these kind words: “Denise Low-Weso, a prolific polymath, is the author of 25 books of poetry and prose. She has a poet’s heart and a scholar’s mind, and she sounds the depths of where she’s researched and been and lived, capturing moments [in Casino Bestiary] with Wm S. Burroughs, Thelonious Monk, and rooms of ghosts.”
Story from Jackalope (Red Mountain Press) airs on High Plains Public Radio “Jackalope Walks into a Truck Stop.”
Denise Low, Kansas Poet Laureate 2007-2009, is award-winning author of 25 books of poetry and prose. She does individual consulting and editing, as well as professional workshops. Low is co-publisher of Mammoth Publications ,an independent small literary press specializing in Indigenous and Mid-Plains poetry and prose. Her poetry blog has over 400 entries, and she reviews poetry for the Kansas City Star and other venues. She teaches in the Baker University School of Professional and Graduate Studies.
The University of Nebraska Press published a memoir about her Native grandfather in 2017: Bison Books-The Turtle’s Beating Heart. Kirkus Reviews writes: “An engagingly written mix of research, reportage, and memoir, infused with the passion of discovery.” Library Journal writes: “Readers interested in the 20th-century American Indian experience will find this to be a valuable account.” In the Minn. Star-Tribune Pamela Miller writes: Low does Americans with Indian ancestry a valuable service by illuminating the unique and often terrible circumstances and choices their forebears faced.” In Forward Reviews Letitia Montgomery Rodgers writes: “An accomplished poet, Low’s well-honed prose flows with lyric intensity. In Kansas, a place ‘where eternity has a real valence,’ she searches for documentary evidence of her ancestors’ passage through history and for the timeless threads of culture—familial and tribal—that could offer an unbroken legacy.”
A book of short fiction, Jackalope, is from Red Mountain Press (Santa Fe, 2016), also available from Small Press Distribution or this website: PAY PAL – JACKALOPE. See a video of Jackalope reading in KC. Cream City Review nominated Low’s flash fiction piece “A Jackalope Walks into an Indian Bar” for a Pushcart Prize.
Her book of poetry Melange Block (Red Mountain Press 2014), explores geological scales of elegies, celebrations, and American Indian and European histories. PAY PAL-MELANGE BLOCK. She has won three Kansas Notable Book awards, five Pushcart Prize nominations, the Lichtor Poetry Prize, fellowships from the Ks. Arts Commission, The Newberry Library and the NEH, and Roberts Foundation Poetry Prize, 2nd place.
Online publications are an essay on the poet Ronald Johnson, an essay on the Black Mountain-related poet Kenneth Irby in Jacket2, an online chapbook In the Direction of North with paintings by Thomas Pecore Weso and new poems, Numero Cinq, May, 2016. Excerpts from Melange Block are featured on the We Wanted To Be Writers website. An interview is in the Museum of Americana literary journal. See her Poetry Foundation biography and sample poems; and Academy of American Poets biography.