Acquired Community

By Jane Byers

Acquired Community
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Jane Byers' Acquired Community is both a collection of narrative poems about seminal moments in North American lesbian and gay history, mostly post-World War II, and a series of first person poems that act as a touchstone to compare the narrator's coming out experience within ... Read more


Overview

Jane Byers' Acquired Community is both a collection of narrative poems about seminal moments in North American lesbian and gay history, mostly post-World War II, and a series of first person poems that act as a touchstone to compare the narrator's coming out experience within the larger context of the gay liberation movement. The "parade" poems such as "Celebration Was a Side Effect, 1992" explores the important role parades have played in the queer movement and how they have transformed from activism to celebration. "St Patrick's Day Parade, 2014" takes the Boston St. Patrick's Day committee's homophobia to task, reminding us that this is not ancient history, but an ever-transforming experience. In her long poem, "Keen," Byers imagines a dialogue between a young queer university student and Michael Lynch, an AIDS activist, poet and scholar who helped found many gay community institutions. In this compelling poem we are reminded that the AIDS epidemic had a rippling effect, touching the lives of everyone within the gay community and well beyond.In this second book by Byers her poems go beyond the historical perspective of LGBT rights and are living examples of progress. Acquired Community examines and celebrates community resilience.

Jane Byers

Jane Byers has published two poetry collections, ACQUIRED COMMUNITY (Dagger Editions, 2016), a 2017 Goldie Award Winner for Poetry, STEELING EFFECTS (Caitlin Press, 2014) and a chapbook, IT HURT, THAT'S ALL I KNOW (Nose in Book Publishing, 2017). She has co-written two award-winning documentary films, Only In Nelson and Conceiving Family. She was the 2018 Writer-in-Residence for Simon Fraser University's Archives of Lesbian Oral Testimony (ALOT). She has had poems and essays published in anthologies and literary journals in Canada, the US and England, including Best Canadian Poetry 2014 (Tightrope Books).

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