Rae: lexical powerhouse. Rae: scientist of intimacies. The words burst as though the poet could not contain them.
Her capacity for eloquence is as vast as her rhetoric is supple.
Gouirand’s voice is hypnotic and potent.
Hers is a new music, indeed a new order of language altogether.
Rae Gouirand’s first collection of poetry, Open Winter, was selected by Elaine Equi for the 2011 Bellday Prize, won an Independent Publisher Book Award for Poetry and the Eric Hoffer Book Award for Poetry, and was a finalist for the Montaigne Medal, the Audre Lorde Award for Poetry, and the California Book Award for Poetry. Her chapbook Must Apple was selected by TC Tolbert for the Oro Fino Award and published by Educe Press in 2018. Her second full-length collection, Glass is Glass Water is Water, was published by Spork Press the same year. Her first work of nonfiction, The History of Art, was selected a winner of the fourth annual open reading period at The Atlas Review and is forthcoming in summer 2019, concurrently with another chapbook, Jinx, a winner in the Summer Kitchen Series Competition at Seven Kitchen Press.
Rae’s work has appeared in American Poetry Review, Beloit Poetry Journal, Conjunctions, Crazyhorse, diode, Michigan Quarterly Review, The Rumpus, ZYZZYVA, Please Excuse This Poem: 100 New Poems for the Next Generation, two volumes of the Best New Poets series, and many other journals and anthologies nationwide, as well as in portfolios at A Dozen Nothing and The Inflectionist Review and the online archives of the Academy of American Poets and Verse Daily. An alumna of Bryn Mawr College and the MFA program in creative writing at the University of Michigan, she has received fellowships from the Vermont Studio Center, the Santa Fe Art Institute, Kalani, and the Willapa Bay Artist-in-Residence programs and an award from the Dorothy Sargent Rosenberg Foundation for outstanding work by emerging poets. Since putting down western roots in 2003, she has founded several longrunning workshops in poetry and prose throughout California’s Sacramento Valley and online, served as Writer-in-Residence for the nation’s only conservancy-sponsored public arts program at Cache Creek Nature Preserve, and worked with the literary nonprofit Memoir Journal to develop a national platform for the (In)Visible Memoirs project, a grant-funded program facilitating writing workshops in underserved communities. In recent years she has served as guest editor for OCHO: A Journal of Queer Arts and a special issue of Adanna in tribute to Adrienne Rich, and as Nonfiction Editor for California Northern magazine.
She lectures in the Department of English at UC-Davis and is currently at work on a third collection of poems, a book-length poem, and a memoir.
Email Rae at rgouirand (at) gmail (dot) com.