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Kore Biters is a monthly interview series that highlights the writing and literary activism of women writers who are transgressive and transformative.

by Arisa White and Rosebud Ben-Oni

Beginning with Her. . .

Lorna Dee Cervantes

What did you do with the Librotraficante Movement?

Lorna Dee Cervantes: "Showed up. I showed up to be a body in the body politic represented there in The People’s Commons, which in the first case happened to be the sidewalk across the street from The Alamo in San Antonio, a place that has my heart as one of the, if not THE birthplace of Chicanao literature and publishing. I paid my own way to show up along the route of the Librotraficante caravan in order to support the movement against banned books in general and the boxing of Chicano Studies textbooks in particular (including Shakespeare’s The Tempest and Thoreau’s “On Civil Disobedience,” two texts crucial to my development from a 14 year old gang-girl to a happy, productive and self-actualized person.)

The student-led movement was sparked by an increasing anti-immigration climate affecting our American institutions, specifically in Arizona, against Mexican citizens or perceived Mexicans, and the boxing of “Banned Books” (as the photographed labels read) confiscated under orders by the Tucson School District from students’ desks and class bookshelves while class was in session. These were middle school students being treated like criminal suspects along with their teachers." [excerpt] See full interview here.

May/Sibilant Sentences & Rhymes with Tsering Wangmo Dhompa

April /Candor is My Default with Airea D. Matthews

Feb / Skin. Muscle. Bones. with Minal Hajratwala

January / Mammoth & Moxie with Rachel McKibbens

Nov-Dec / Mettasphere with Metta Sáma

October / Bitches' Brew with Erika L. Sánchez

 

Notes From The Motherfield is a curated column of fieldnotes and writings of various shapes and durations by motherwriters of all kinds.

This is How it Happens by Christine Simokaitis

Christine Simokaitis: There is a woman behind the desk and she asks why I’m here. I say, “I think I’m having a miscarriage.” She gives me a form to fill out. We wait.


Everything had seemed so dire all of a sudden with the mention of the ER. Tim had wanted to come, and so Caleb is with us too. When my name is called, I’m led down the hallway to a room where I wait some more until a resident comes in, holding my chart and asks why I’m here. I say, “I think I’m having a miscarriage.” I tell him about the cramps and bleeding. He draws blood and leaves. A minute later he returns and says his supervising doctor wants to know how pregnant I am. I say just barely, that it’s only a couple of days past when I should have had my period. He nods, leaves, and a minute later he returns again and says that his supervising doctor wants to know the first date of my last period.
I’ve been dreading this question, because for me it’s complicated.
[excerpt]

see the full essay here.

motherhood is requiring that much by Adria Bernardi

Motherhood as Grand Mal by Soma Mei Sheng Frazier HERE

Living In-Between by Shefali Milczarek-Desai HERE

Invisible Labors by Monica J. Casper HERE

 

Roll call! Huge shout out of appreciations to Kore's 2014 Open Submissions Editorial Team!



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Activism

Tracie Morris judges

Kore's 2015 First Book Award

WINNER ANNOUNCED IN SEPT

CONTEST CLOSED


contest details here

$1500 prize plus trade book publication

 

"Silent Anatomies,"selected by Joy Harjo

Contest information here.

 

Roxane Gay is judging

Kore's 2015 Short Fiction Award

Winner announced in July

contest details here
$1250 prize plus limited edition chapbook and e-publication

 

ROXANE GAY INTERVIEW BY ARISA WHITE

 

For 21 years, Kore Press has been dedicated to social justice and the voices of ALL women and girls through literary activism. We inspire and support the creative genius of women writers to maintain a vivid stronghold for women in the world and the collective mind. We are one of four feminist presses in the country that have lasted over 20 years, one of two to publish more than 5 literary titles/year by women, AND the only one to invest in the next generation of female leaders with activism workshops for youth. Help keep Kore bright for ALL women.

 

Why Kore Press? "I used to think the function of art was the transformation of sorrow, but I now think it is the transformation of consciousness."—Jane Miller

 

Why women & girls?

* 12 of the 102 Nobel Prizes in Literature have gone to women

* Since 1948, the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction has gone to 16 women & 42 men

* Since its inception in 1923, Time Magazine has had one female editor

* 26% of the members of the New York Times editorial board are women, 35% at The Wallstreet Journal, and 33% at the LA Times

We believe that lifting up "half the sky" is the way to create long-term, sustainable change and a luminous future for all.

 

Kore Press Membership

Do you believe in the power of women and girls' voices?

If the answer is YES, please consider helping lift up these voices by becoming a member of the Press. Kore members are invest in the Press' mission of progressive social justice through feminist publishing and literary activism.

Participate in the production of your culture!

Help Kore keep women inspired, at the table, and talking outloud. Become a member today.

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Kore Press is a nonprofit 501(c)(3) literary arts organization made possible by grants, book sales, submissions fees, sponsorships, and gifts from individuals like you.

Literature

POEM OF THE WEEK

by Jamaica Heolimeleikalani Osorio

Mai Pa‘a I Ka Leo  

   their eyes widen when water falls out

   ocean spilling vowels through me

   kaona spurting from salt

   classmates stutter in silence

   trying to repeat

   sound locked in shackle shaped lips

   they do not know

   the way their english barely breaches  surface

   and i find it ironic

   i have been chosen

   artist in a mode

   dictated by the superficiality of colonial tongues



          Previous POWs: Natalie Diaz, Ruth Forman, Shauna Osborn,

          Adria Bernardi, Kimberly Johnson, Sarah Browning

 

NEW BOOKS

new poems by Laynie Browne

""The mysterious power of the scorpion, both animal and constellation, informs the complex emotions of wrenchingly ongoing departure in this beautiful collection of odes to distance, absence, connection, and memory. The scorpion is the "miniature vessel of time" that both poisons and heals: the gorgeous poetry around it is the "house of hope/constructed solely of words." In this world of departures, Browne allows us to "Say possibly nothing is forgotten."—Marcella Durand

$15.95, 7x7," 56 pgs, perfect bound

ISBN 978-1-888553-70-3

 

A poetic-visual hybrid by Monica Ong

2014 First Book Winner selected by Joy Harjo

" In her sardonic, thus melancholic, Silent Anatomies, Monica Ong brilliantly skews the marking of surfaces. Writing—yes—but also defacement/effacement, surgical incision, racism. With text, photography, collage, and illustration, she maps the twisting way of familial shame; dissects metaphor; and hawks (and hocks) “Ancient Chinese Secrets” as medicinal cakewalks (who’s selling what to whom?). Slippery."Douglas Kearney

$17.95, 7.5 x10," 96 pgs, perfect bound

ISBN 978-1-888553-69-7

 

A Parallel Life by Mary Byrne

Kore Short Fiction Winner

 

To Boil Water by Myha T. Do

Kore Short Fiction Winner

 

Wear your activism!

Sexy Brains tee-shirts designed by

the Grrls Literary Activism Workshop

$20

Women's V-neck, dark gray with pink ink

(women's XL, L, M, S)

Kore Press T-Shirts