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Contributions by Gibson Fay-LeBlanc:

“Lorca says, ‘the duende loves the rim of the wound’.”

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Collaborators’ Q&A: Artist Lauren Woods: I was really drawn to your poem because, first off, I didn’t know what “duende” meant or who Lorca was. But when I read the poem, I got this feeling of intangible, distant, deep sorrow that I could relate to but also felt intimate, so it was this push and pull feel, and I was really inspired by it. Poet Gibson Fay-LeBlanc: Sentences are very physical to me. But at the same time… I don’t understand how you translate feeling into physical anything. So I’m super curious like how a [dance] piece starts.

Lauren Woods is an artist whose practice and creative research explores concepts of mythic time. Artworks become a space to examine notions of nostalgia, desire, power, beauty, death, and embodied expression. Personal myth is developed visually across various mediums such as painting, video, and dance performances. Poet Gibson Fay-LeBlanc‘s first collection of poems, Death of a Ventriloquist won the Vassar Miller Prize and his second, Deke Dangle Dive, was published by CavanKerry Press in 2021. His poems have appeared in magazines including the New Republic, Tin House, jubilat, Poetry Northwest, and Orion. He serves as executive director of the Maine Writers & Publishers Alliance and lives in Portland.

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“Hockey Poem”

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Collaborators’ Q&A: Poet Gibson Fay-LeBlanc: I love the flames that Michele created here, flames made of text. It is the goalie’s words that spark the poem, that set the speaker on fire. Artist Michele L’Heureux: I love the commentary on masculinity in this poem. As a former athlete and the sister of two brothers who played hockey, I understand oppressive locker-room attitudes about gender and sexuality, which can be pervasive.

Poet Gibson Fay-LeBlanc‘s first collection of poems is Death of a Ventriloquist. In 2011 he was named one of Maine’s “emerging leaders” by the Portland Press Herald and MaineToday Media for his work directing The Telling Room, where he still occasionally teaches writing. Artist Michele L’Heureux is a painter and curator who runs galleries at Wheaton College and at Brandeis University’s Women’s Studies Research Center.

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