E. Kristin Anderson is a Pushcart-nominated poet and author who grew up in Westbrook, Maine and is a graduate of Connecticut College. She has a fancy diploma that says “B.A. in Classics,” which makes her sound smart but has not helped her get any jobs in Ancient Rome. Once upon a time she worked for the lovely folks at The New Yorker magazine, but she soon packed her bags and moved to Austin, Texas where she works as a freelance editor and writing coach. Wearer of many proverbial hats, Kristin an editor at NonBinary Review, helps make books at Lucky Bastard Press, and is a poetry editor at Found Poetry Review. Kristin is the co-editor of the DEAR TEEN ME anthology (Zest Books, 2012), based on the website of the same name. Her YA memoir THE SUMMER OF UNRAVELLING is forthcoming in 2017 from ELJ Publications. As a poet she has been published in many magazines including Juked, [PANK], Asimov’s Science Fiction, Hotel Amerika, Room and Cicada and she has work forthcoming in Plath Profiles and The Quotable. Kristin is the author of six chapbooks of poetry: A GUIDE FOR THE PRACTICAL ABDUCTEE (Red Bird Chapbooks, 2014), A JAB OF DEEP URGENCY (Finishing Line Press, 2014), PRAY, PRAY, PRAY: Poems I wrote to Prince in the middle of the night (Porkbelly Press, 2015), ACOUSTIC BATTERY LIFE (forthcoming from ELJ Publications), FIRE IN THE SKY (forthcoming from Greybook Press), and SHE WITNESSES (forthcoming from dancing girl press). She hand-wrote her first trunk book at sixteen. It was about the band Hanson and may or may not still be in a notebook in her parents’ garage. She blogs at EKristinAnderson.com.
From A Guide for the Practical Abductee
A Guide for the Practical Abductee
It will be some time before sleep
returns to normal. Out there,
without the solar cycle
so regular, as it is on Earth,
you feel always somnambulant.
So it's not the nightmares that wake --
it's the clocks that once stopped,
the dark everywhere; humans thrive
on sunsets, sunrises.
Keep your stories. Or else write them
as fictions. Publishing is cruel
but your kin are crueler --
to them you were missing mere minutes
and your yarns woven with space travel
and days and days are anachronistic at best.
I have felt the soft walls of the institution;
you will not enjoy it.
On the nights when you swear you smell stars,
when the dark is too bright and, eyes shut,
you hear their voices warble down,
put the tablet on your tongue,
swallow, keep your eyes closed,
and call me.
What others are saying...
In GUIDE FOR THE PRACTICAL ABDUCTEE, Anderson leaps into an array of narrative personas with an actor's gusto --even once writing from the point of view of an animal. These are special, biting poems, written with salty/sweet relatability; who hasn't felt that they are "a traffic light set on yellow forever"?
It may be no accident that the animal she chooses to inhabit is a unicorn.
-- Kirsten Smith, author of Trinkets and screenwriter of 10 Things I Hate About You.
This guide comes from the spirit in the Ouija board, the unseen voice in the haunted forest, the shapeshifter between worlds. E. Kristin Anderson takes on the role of the mysterious mentor who has "felt the soft walls of the institution", offering a roadmap to the reader. From the loneliness of the Sasquatch to the last traces of the wolfman, this is a collection "rife with would-be magic".
--Kirsten Irving, Editor of Fuselit magazine and Sidekick Books, and author of Never, Never, Never Come Back.
Otherworldly and addictively odd, the poems in A Guide for the Practical Abductee offer insight into the obsessive human need to rely on legends, magic, and mystery. Deftly switching between powerful narrative voices, E. Kristen Anderson reveals the truth behind the strong need for stories. Smart, peculiar, and devastatingly honest, Anderson’s poems celebrate the unexplainable dark and the desire that lurks there.
-- Ada Limón, author of Lucky Wreck and Sharks in the River
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