One of the wildest parts about selecting poetry features for Peach is when I occasionally solicit work from a writer who’s had a big impact on my own writing, and they agree. Last Friday at Peach was one of those such times as we published two poems by Kimmy Walters, a San Diego-based writer whose two poetry collections, KILLER and UPTALK (both out with Bottlecap Press), are a very big deal for me. Walters’s poetry carries a unique sense of playfulness that always keeps the reader wonderfully off guard. Friday’s two poems, “Spinning Asterisk” and “This Year,” are full of the surprising observations and internal monologue that are characteristic to Walters’s poetry, making daily life unbearably poetic. “will I be called sweetheart this week?” she writes in “Spinning Asterisk.” “of course I will / it’s gotten to the point that I believe / I might be one.”
Civil Coping Mechanisms / 2018 / poetry collection
Out now from Civil Coping Mechanisms is Shy Watson’s debut full-length poetry collection, Cheap Yellow. The book, which was a finalist for the press’s annual Mainline competition, is devastating and very funny, and the reader experiences both the cringe of recognition and the satisfaction of being in on the joke. In “election day,” she writes, “never underestimate anyone with money / never overestimate / the guy you f*cked last night / because he will probably explain to you / his interpretation / of your fear.” Previously the author of several chapbooks, such as Away Status from Bottlecap Press, a full-length collection has afforded Watson the room to experiment with a book’s form; as such, Cheap Yellow is tailored into parts that are inspired by shades of yellow—dehydrated piss, stars on a wizard hat, chiffon—like Bluets if Maggie Nelson had been inspired by box bleach and mascara stains on a pillowcase. Watson’s debut is wonderfully raunchy and painfully sweet. In “whenever you’re in me,” she writes, “it’s like when there is wind / inside of a building / or a bird inside of a building / or a leak inside of a building / or an intruder.” —RACHELLE TOARMINO
“Peach Picks” is a column of literary news and recommendations written by the editors of Peach Mag, an online literary magazine based in Buffalo. For inquiries, contact the editors at email@example.com.