Weekend Rumpus Roundup


First, Brandon Hicks mocks the electoral process in his illustrated narrative, “God Is Dead: Campaign Coverage.”

Then, in the Saturday Essay, Kade Walker remembers her grandmother, a private woman of Jamaican descent who is too proud to tell her family she has cancer. Her secretiveness creates an additional layer of mystery around Walker’s memories of her.

Next, Ann Van Buren reviews Vivas To Those Who Have Failed by Martin Espada. Like Kade Walker’s essay, Espada’s collection also takes on the universe of immigration and its “communities—the poor, the helpless, the working class.” The “transgressions” that the United States exacts upon its most valuable residents take center stage in this “earnest” and “elegiac” book.

Finally, in the Sunday Essay, Rebecca Kuder confronts early menopause lyrically and metaphorically. The strange heat inside makes her body into a “pyre;” she is overlooked by younger generations and feels “invisible;” she is a “dry leaf in autumn.” Prose-poetry allows Kuder to live in the present moment, despite the pain and alienation she feels.

Read more of Max Gray at Big City Sasquatch or follow him on Twitter @City_Sasquatch. His fiction and nonfiction have appeared in Encounters, Mount Hope, Conte, tNY.press, and English Kills Review. He co-hosts the etymology podcast Words For Dinner and is a graduate of the Rutgers-Newark MFA program. More from this author →