With Stefa Govaart, Emerald Anastasia, Nadia de Vries, Helena Grande, and Natalee Cruz

Tuesday, February 21, 2023, 7–9pm

Book cover for Nadia de Vries's Know Thy Audience

About the event

To celebrate the release of Nadia de Vries’s poetry book Know Thy Audience, published by Moist Books, the author will read from her book alongside poets Stefa Govaart, Emerald Rose Anastasia, and helena grande.  

Know Thy Audience, Nadia de Vries’s third poetry collection, disavows the platitude from which it takes its name and makes the reader complicit in both her aggression and her submission, sparked by a history of domestic abuse that escapes all euphemism and metaphor – but not poetry altogether. Speaking—or rather, singing—as a "battered woman" from a working-class neighborhood, De Vries’s aphoristic writing belies a vengeful reversal of roles in which the author—and not her perpetrator—pulls the strings. Who is the victim in these poems? Can violence be redeemed through esthetic metamorphosis? Or can powerlessness only be transferred as fetish? Know Thy Audience investigates the extent to which a victim can share their wounds, and to what degree an audience can—sensibly, ethically—be burdened with painful knowledge.

About the readers

Stefa Govaart is a performer and poet based between Brooklyn and Brussels. They have performed internationally, including MACBA (Barcelona), Serralves (Porto), KINDL (Berlin), MDT (Stockholm), Kunstenfestivaldesarts (Brussels), Petach Tikva (Tel Aviv), working with Eszter Salamon and Claudia Pagès Rabal, among many others. Recent work was staged at rile* (Brussels), Perdu and de Appel (Amsterdam). They are working on their first poetry collection Book of Tooth.

Emerald Rose Anastasia (they/them) is an emerging poet originally from Bakersfield, CA. They are pursuing an MFA in poetry at The New School, and their poems appear and are forthcoming in Cordite Poetry Reviewprotean, and beestung. Their poetry has been featured on Verse Daily

Nadia de Vries is a poet from Amsterdam, the Netherlands. She is the author of three poetry collections, most recently Know Thy Audience (Moist Books, 2023), and also writes in Dutch. She holds a PhD in Cultural Analysis from the University of Amsterdam, and is an editor at the Flemish cultural journal nY.

helena grande is the author of Speech Choke (Hocus Bogus Publishing, 2020). She is currently living in New York City where she studies an MFA in Creative Writing. While finishing her novella, Helena works as a Readings Coordinator and a TA at The New School. Her writing has appeared in Dostoyevsky WannabeFictional JournalnYdiSONARE, and Editions Clinamen, and she has received support from the Prins Bernhard Cultuurfonds, Amsterdams Fonds voor de Kunst and WriteOn NYC Fellowship. 

Natalee Cruz is a poet and fiction writer living in Brooklyn. She is so very close to completing her MFA from The New School. When she's not in school, she's teaching creative writing to sixth graders in Astoria. She's also an editor/reader for Milk Press Books (The Poetry Society of New York) and LIT magazine (The New School). Her work has been published in The Spectacle (Washington University, St. Louis), Sazerac Smokey Ink, The Ilanot Review, and Electric Literature. Her chapbook I Have Seen the Bluest Blue (Ugly Duckling Presse) is out now.


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