Yesterday at Peach, we published the poem “A Record of Everything I’ve Outlived” by S. Erin Batiste. Batiste has been a finalist in several poetry contests, including our recent Peach Gold in Poetry, and has work forthcoming in one of our favorite publications, Cosmonauts Avenue. In the featured poem, S. Erin Batiste lists 37 things that she has outlived in her 37 years of life. The list ranges from the simple—“pneumonia”—to the heart-wrenching—“my mother’s mother; / who mothered me as much as she could; / who left me heavy with her stories and Southernness; / who left behind so much silence.” Batiste masterfully hits you with a range of emotions in a way that very few poets can do.
Last Friday at the Second Reader Bookshop in North Buffalo, local publishing power BlazeVOX hosted a reading that featured Buffalo’s own John Rigney and Paige Melin alongside visiting poet Roger Craik. Rigney opened with an anecdote about favorite poems which led into a poem that read something like, “a favorite poem has to hit you like a truck on a dark night”—a perfect theme for the night. Next, Melin read poems including one of my personal favorites, “things that want to drunk text you, but won’t,” in which she writes, “i live for the fear in people’s eyes when I tell them I’m a poet.” Finally, Craik read poems that he chooses to refer to as pieces ranging from the serious to laugh-out-loud funny. My personal favorite was “Doors of Academia,” which closes with the line, “the books remain.” —BRE KIBLIN
“Peach Picks” is a column of literary news and recommendations written by the editors of Peach Mag, an online literary magazine based in Buffalo, New York. For inquiries, contact the editors at firstname.lastname@example.org.