Category Archives: Alumni News

Jack Kerouac School @ AWP


Photos by Anisah Ali, Garen Lavender, Swanee, Erika Hodges

My mother bites her nails, and I am not like her. I am the skin around her. —  How Ginsberg can I bed? — I am here and you are here but we are nowhere to be found. — Looked at the map unfolded on his lap. “Empire of ideas.” — I want to tell you I am coming. Please don’t Super Nova yet. — If learn is synonymous with teach, how is student not synonymous with teacher? — Remember who owned the land we now occupy.

These are all lines from the Student & Alumni reading on Saturday afternoon. Their voices on the foreground to the exhibit hall hum, the culmination of four days worth of book mongering, poetry-promoting, free-speech protesting, heritage, vigil and vigor. 

It was an inspiring long weekend, which began with our first visitor to our table of the weekend, Alice Notley, garbed in a white scarf with sky-blue owls on it. Between her and other old friends to bright, new faces inquiring to our graduate programs we had such visitors as to make us full on Community. And what we brought to give away, we gave it all– issues 41 & 42 of Bombay Gin, select broadsides and anthologies, ex libris stickers, and other sweet swag. 

And although everything happened at once, and we were sad not to see you all, Summer Writing Program is right around the corner to reunite our tribe of Bodhisattvas. 

Kerouac School Alum featured on GonzoToday

Bradon Lee (MFA Class of 2015) was recently featured on Gonzo Today. His piece “Straight From Hell Into The Kentucky Derby” outlines his recent trip to Kentucky to cover the derby and his run in with “the inbred court system.”

Image by Ralph Steadman

Beat Reading for Boulder Arts Week

Boulder Arts Week highlights Boulder’s distinguished arts and cultural programming and includes art walks, First Friday, exhibitions, performances, dance, music, theatre, artist demonstrations, lectures, readings, workshops, and symposia.

Join students and alumni from the Jack Kerouac School of Disembodied Poetics as they honor our Beat lineage:

The Beat Drags On

Kerouac School Alum Angel Dominguez’s Black Lavender Milk Just Published

Timeless, Infinite Light has published JKS alumn Angel Dominguez’s Black Lavender Milk.

Black Lavender Milk is an experimental lyric that dreamt of becoming a novel only to wake up as notebook. Employing and smudging elements of poetry, prose and memoir, Black Lavender Milk offers the space of a “novel” as a site of mourning, inquiry and recuperation. Through a complex, hypnotic blur of language, the lyric-as-novel functions as an extended meditation on Writing in relation to the Body; Time, Loss, Ancestry and Dreaming.

Alum JH Phrydas’ New Book

Kerouac School Alumnus, JH Phrydas’s book Levitations was recently published.

Navigating the subtle ways language (con)forms the body, Levitations spans childhood, community, and love to explore how we might break free from the cultural demands of normalcy. Imagined as “a preface for the work to come,” Levitations unfolds like a sketchbook of emergent architectures, valuing queer hope in a time of vertically integrated and insidiously embodied imperialist rule.

In a recent interview with Entropy, Phrydas had this to say about the process of writing his book:

“I don’t feel like I wrote the book; rather, the book built itself from layers of thought, emotion, and anger up in those woods. Each sentence became a color, composed and itemized, and then, during the final months of writing, I would drag my eyes and pen across the entirety of the manuscript—every day from start to finish—as if editing with a comb. If something caught, a strange texture felt against the eyes, the pen, I would slide it away until it stuck somewhere else. Levitations became a sort of Gerhard Richter abstract painting in prose:”

Abstraktes Bild (Abstract Painting) 2005 30cm x 44 cm Catalogue Raisonné: 894-16 Oil on Alu Dibond
Abstraktes Bild (Abstract Painting) 2005 30cm x 44 cm Catalogue Raisonné: 894-16 Oil on Alu Dibond

Levitations is available for purchase through Timeless, Infinite Light and through Small Press Distribution.

SWP Guest Faculty Named one of 2015 National Book Foundation’s “5 Under 35”

Azareen Van Der Vliet Oloomi, an alum and Guest Faculty of the Summer Writing Program, was named one of the National Book Foundation’s “5 Under 35.” You can read more in The Obsever and at the National Book Foundation site.

Here’s a Q&A with all the 2015 Honorees:

Kerouac School Alum Contributes to Season 2 of Transparent

Season 2 of Amazon’s hit series Transparent was recently released – just in time for us to binge watch it over our holiday break. The story revolves around a Los Angeles family and their lives following the discovery that the person they knew as their father (Jeffrey Tambor) is transgender.

Merissa Nathan Gerson, graduate of the MFA in Writing and Poetics at the Jack Kerouac School of Disembodied Poetics, served as a consultant for the show – teaching the writers room about inter-generational trauma. Season 2 delves deeply into this topic, which Merissa studied during her time at Naropa.

Since graduating, Merissa has also had work published in various outlets including The Atlantic, Tablet Magazine and Playboy. She also teaches workshops at community centers, rabbi schools and synagogues across the city of Los Angeles about sex and Judaism.

Learn more about her work at