Laura Hershey

On the Life & Work of an American Master

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  • Published in 2019
  • ISBN: 978-0-9970994-4-7
  • 249 pages

This tenth volume in the Unsung Masters Series focuses on Denver-based poet and activist Laura Hershey, a vital, brilliant, and until now lesser-known poet who, during her short life, was a major invigorating force in the movements for disabilities rights, queer poetries, and activist poetics.

“Laura Hershey was one of the first crip poets out there, unabashedly swinging her queer crip self, fully engaged in her words, fully alive to possibility while never neglecting the immediacy of her disabled life. These poems clear space for all of us to enact ourselves more fully, to live out loud however we might speak, to think and live outside the box, and the next box, and the next.” —Jim Ferris, author of The Hospital Poems

“Laura Hershey’s poems are always innervating—lovely and lyrical, audacious and delightful. They never bore. Reading them, I’m reminded of how poetry is transformative—how it is radical in fact—reordering the jumbled misapprehensions of the world. Making things new again. They don’t ask permission. They speed. They sing.” —Paul Guest, author of Because Everything Is Terrible

“This is a necessary and profound book, the one we have been waiting for since the loss of Hershey almost a decade ago. At last, her insistent, delicious, world-shifting poems are gathered together in one place, available to teach and learn from, to pass around to friends and comrades in arms. Folded together with wise and searching essays by four eloquent interlocutors, and incisive, moving introductions by the editors, Hershey’s long overdue collected works provide a roadmap to a world as concerned with pleasure as with justice, and connection as much as revolution. I delighted in reading this book . . . moved by the tender trust and firm insistence of Hershey’s words, and I know you will too.” —Ellen Samuels, author of Fantasies of Identification: Disability, Gender, Race

Edited by

Meg Day

Meg Day is the 2015–16 recipient of the Amy Lowell Poetry Traveling Scholarship, a 2013 recipient of an NEA Fellowship in Poetry, and author of Last Psalm at Sea Level, winner of the Publishing Triangle's Audre Lorde Award and a finalist for the 2016 Kate Tufts Discovery Award. Day is currently an Assistant Professor of English & Creative Writing at Franklin & Marshall College

Niki Herd

Niki Herd is the author of The Language of Shedding Skin. He work has appeared most recently in Obsidian and The Texas Review. She is an Inprint C. Glenn Campbell Fellow of Literature & Creative Writing at the University of Houston.