“SIMPLES” is inflected by the Bible as well as by personal accounts of settling the Midwest (with the shocking erasures of witness). KateLynn Hibbard tells us that at the frontier, women were workers and visionaries, makers, namers, travelers; they embodied knowledge, experienced violence and lust, gave birth. They were indifferent, wise, sensual. Women who helped, learned to weave, make lace, were immigrants from Germany and elsewhere, were Native American, without names, made baskets, lost their families and language, were called ‘primitive.’ Most women buried their children, their friends, their sisters; they suffered and, sometimes, they thrived. I loved Hibbard’s unflinching book!”—Hilda Raz
Poetry. “Kate Lynn Hibbard’s SLEEPING UPSIDE DOWN is a beautiful book of poetry, composed in well-crafted and pleasing cadences, sharing a vision of sexuality extraordinary for both the strong storytelling it inspires, and for a tender intimacy that pervades each strophe like another warm music. In poem after poem, it is a former norm of sexual orientation that is consciously backgrounded—a past, “straight” life fraught with the unresolved and repressed—and a new, happy and mature lifecelebrated and patiently chronicled in its stead. It is then that the plain sweetness of the everyday returns—planting peas for a summer garden, cooking a cranberry chutney, sleeping through a blizzard in late March—and all of these shared in the erotics of a woman-to-woman lovingness. What a debut. It was a gift to have read this wonderful book.”—Garrett Hongo
Poetry. LGBT Studies. “In this remarkable second collection, Kate Lynn Hibbard has brilliantly created a lexicon of arguing and art, religion and women’s lives. In precise language and varying forms, Hibbard digs into the meaning of words, loss, and love in he keen observations of flowers, neighbors, birds, condoms, snow, and parents. Not afraid of traditional forms, the detritus of sex, or a stray pantless Barbie, Hibbard’s poems shimmer with heat like a car stalled on the side of a summer freeway, surprise with their fresh images, such as comparing an artichoke to Marilyn Monroe. Spontaneous and researched, pruned yet wild, edited but honest, wise but playful, this book celebrated the generosity of the female body, our joyous but flawed gardens, our unresolved and naked pasts.”—Katherine Kysar
Poetry. When We Become Weavers: Queer Female Poets on the Midwestern Experience
Edited by KateLynn Hibbard
“What do the writers in this book have in common? The short answer: abuse, beauty, grit, wit, our histories …”
When We Become Weavers brings together a multitude of voices exploring the many dimensions of the Midwest queer female experience: a land of moderation and extremes, lakes and thunderstorms, tall grass prairie and dance clubs, racism and transphobia, assault and female erotic power. In this volume, 17 poets, familiar and new, share stories you won’t soon forget.
“This compelling anthology cuts across conflicting representations of Midwestern women’s lives, accepting everyone, denying no one. In forms as varied as their experiences, these poets uncover their presence in Midwestern history, present urban and rural worlds readers may not expect, and remind us how far acceptance of queer people has come while refusing to ignore the threats that remain. When We Become Weavers puts ‘flyover country’ on a new, entirely different map.” — Michael Walsh, author of The Dirt Riddles