Coming Soon: “from below/denied the light” by Paulie Lipman

Welcome, Paulie Lipman, to the Swimming with Elephants Publications family!

Out of Denvthumbnail_BW Promo Picer, Colorado, Paulie comes “from below” and rises to join our parade of writers.

A two time National Poetry Slam finalist, Paulie Lipman is a loud Jewish Queer poet, performer, and writer. His work has appeared in the anthology ‘We Will Be Shelter’ (Write Bloody Publishing) as well as The Emerson Review, Drunk In A Midnight Choir, Voicemail Poems, pressure gauge, and Prisma (Zeitblatt Fur Text & Sprache).

A magical individual, I’ve had the chance to share at least one meal with Paulie in a group setting during the 2015 Denver 40 oz. regional slam; from there, I can recollect Paulie’s genuine kindness, their welcoming spirit, their talent in writing and performing, their endless inspirations and ideas, and their sort of soft loudness that allows others to be heard while their voice lifts in passionate intervals. At the time, I was a “newbie” to competitive slam, but it was with that interaction that Paulie, a veteran to slam to my eyes, made me feel heard throughout the group conversation, going so far as to ask me questions personally so I might be involved in the busy-ness that often overwhelms when you’re sat at a table full of poets.

Their upcoming title with SwEP, “from below/denied the light,” is a deep exploration o317P2HxRehL._SX311_BO1,204,203,200_f addiction, sobriety, spirituality, and identity. With micro-poem interludes, Paulie captivates with self-recognized flaws from the beginning, sharing with readers:

I am a snob when I have no right to be

I judge people who don’t read

Even though I’m a recovering junkie, I have
little tolerance for current ones

I love and help those who deserve it, don’t
ask me how I determine that

Nevertheless, he shines as an example in this brutal self-recognition of knowing he may be “horrible to love”; and still, his work is so easy to fall into as he touches on subjects of his queer identity and how it conflicts with his Jewish blood, and his path into recovery as he addresses past self-destruction.

Of course, with all this to consider, as the title may suggest, Paulie’s book is not a “light” read. Combatting demons throughout, Paulie has managed to create a subtle journey into sobriety and spirituality without overwhelming in its occasional anger and the quiet sadness of providing his own funeral dirge (in a poem aptly named Dirge). And even then, there is a tenderness on the final, lamentful line (but I’ll leave that to mystery).

Beautifully worded and artfully ordered, “from below/denied the light” is available for pre-order on Paulie’s site.

You can also follow them on Facebook or catch them on Instagram.

 

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Busy January!

Swimming with Elephants Publications, LLC has a wonderful line up of poets releasing manuscripts in 2018.

Some poets are releasing their second book with SwEP, while others are joining the parade for the first time.

By forming a relationship with Sugar Booking Entertainment, we will be producing the books/ chapbooks of several of their touring poets this year, including Paulie Lipman, Wil Gibson, Mercedez Holtry, and Gigi Bella.

Keep an eye open for new publications and events near you!

Uptown Girl: An NYC Dream Cabaret

Join us for an evening of spoken word poetry, musical theater, and general weird theater kid stuff. Featuring a performance by GiGi Bella and a special appearance by The Fridges. This is also a fundraiser for the Get In The Fridge Productions Spring Musical Godspell, as well as GiGi Bella’s upcoming tour. The artists greatly appreciate every single contribution!

Pay what you can ($8 suggested donation).

Note: This show contains content that may not be suitable for children.

About the artists:
GiGi Bella is the tenth ranked female poet in the world (WOWPS 2017). She is the current Project X Bronx Poetry Champion, the 2017 Vox Pop Indie Champion, a 2017 Fem Slam Finalist and a literal mermaid. She is also a 2016 National Poetry Slam Group Piece Champion and 2013 Semi-Finalist as part of The Albuquerque Poetry Slam Team. Her book, 22, is available through Swimming With Elephants Publications. She will commence her first US Tour in the Spring of 2018. She also has a rad musical theater background as a performer and teacher.

Get In The Fridge Productions is a new and upcoming theater company run by teens for teens (kinda like Kids Bop but way better, I promise). We specialize in making teenagers feel like they’re welcome as well as geeking out about our favorite musical obsessions. Please support our production of Godspell in April!