Windy City Media Group Frontpage News
Celebrating 30 Years of Gay Lesbian Bisexual and Trans News
home search facebook twitter join
Gay News Sponsor Windy City Times 2020-01-08
DOWNLOAD ISSUE
About WCMG Publications News Index  Entertainment Features Bars & Clubs Calendar Videos Advertisers OUT! Guide    Marriage

Sponsor
Sponsor
Sponsor

  WINDY CITY TIMES

BOOKS Inclusive anthology 'Halal' launches at Poetry Foundation
by Kelsey Hoff
2019-04-14

facebook twitter pin it google +1 reddit email


The Poetry Foundation was packed the night of April 11 for the book launch of Halal If You Hear Me, a collection of poems and essays by Muslims who are women, queer, genderqueer, non-binary or trans.

The book is the third installment of Haymarket Books' BreakBeat Poets anthology series of writings canonizing poetics in the age of hip-hop. Editors Fatimah Asghar and Safia Elhillo spoke and read their work along with contributors Beyza Ozer, Jacinda Bullie and Edil Hassan.

Asghar and Elhillo read excerpts from each other's forewords—Elhillo reading from Asghar's "Finding the Hammam" and Asghar reading from Elhillo's "Good Muslim/Bad Muslim." Then representatives from an inclusive Islamic community center in the Loop, Masjid al-Rabia, shared their mission and spoke about some of their programs, including an LGBTQIA+ Muslim prison ministry, and facilitated a prayer.

"The poems and essays in The BreakBeat Poets Vol. 3: Halal If You Hear Me are the Muslim community I didn't know I was allowed to dream of. This is the Muslim community my child-self could have blossomed in—proof of the fact that there are as many ways to be Muslim as there are Muslims," Elhillo states in her foreword. She added that it feels good to have this book as an object representing her community that is invisible but nonetheless exists, and she hopes it will help break down walls of compartmentalization on a community level.

"Let us create a poetics that [re-creates] the hammam, where we can come in our real, naked skin, sit in the water, and talk openly. Where all of us—the hijabis, the haraamis, the uncovered, the gender-nonconforming, the queer, the married, the never-married, the virgins, the non-virgins, the brown, the black, the white the yellow—can just be," states Asghar's foreword. According to her, writing poetry has helped her feel "seen." The hammam is a Turkish bath, and Asghar noted in an interview that it would make the perfect place to read Halal If You Hear Me.

When asked how many submissions they received for the anthology, Asghar replied, "Way too many." This may have been, in part, due to the number of first-time submitters who felt moved to send in their work because the call was so specific to their identities. It was also a first for both editors, neither of whom had ever edited a major anthology; however, they decided to pursue the idea they came up with together at a Poetry Foundation event in 2016.

The readings covered a wide range of topics, including bodies, borders, death, travel, families, violence, tattoos and more. Readers shared a bit about their identity and why they are compelled to write about it. Coming from Turkish, Choctaw, Appalachian, Sudanese, Somalian, Pakistani and Kashmiri backgrounds, they spoke about how their differences from other Muslims and U.S. residents—especially concerning gender and sexual orientation—affected their lives. Many of their poems expressed the beauty and pride they have found in these differences.

The readers adjourned to the Poetry Foundation Library afterward to meet with the audience and sign books. An after-party was held at The Hoxton with music by DJ Cashera, mehndi and tarot.

Because the book was launched during National Poetry Month, it will be available for half off until the end of April through Haymarket Books. A folio of selected poems from the anthology will appear in this month's issue of Poetry Magazine.

See www.haymarketbooks.org/books/1273-halal-if-you-hear-me .


facebook twitter pin it google +1 reddit email





Windy City Media Group does not approve or necessarily agree with the views posted below.
Please do not post letters to the editor here. Please also be civil in your dialogue.
If you need to be mean, just know that the longer you stay on this page, the more you help us.


  ARTICLES YOU MIGHT LIKE

Gay News

'She Shot Him Dead' among newest Newberry offerings 2020-01-13 - The seminar series "She Shot Him Dead: Husband-Slaying in Turn-of-the-Century Chicago" will take place Tuesdays Feb. 11-March 10, 6-7:30 p.m. at Newberry Library, ...


Gay News

LGBTQ+ nonfiction writing class starts Feb. 23 2020-01-13 - StoryStudio Chicago, 4043 N. Ravenswood Ave., is offering a new course on writing stories from a queer perspective. Conceived by author Jeremy Owens, ...


Gay News

Kathy Acker tribute Jan. 10 2020-01-08 - "Re: Acker"—a tribute to experimental writer/artist Kathy Acker ( 1947-1997 )—will take place Friday, Jan. 10, 7-9 p.m., at M. LeBlanc Gallery, 3514 ...


Gay News

LGBT neuropsychologist mom pens book about life with very young kids 2019-12-24 - Dr. Bethany Cook is a 42-year-old licensed clinical psychologist ( and member of the LGBT community ) with a specialty in neuropsychological assessment. ...


Gay News

BOOK REVIEW Toil & Trouble 2019-12-24 - By Augusten Burroughs $27.99; St. Martin's Press; 320 pages Halloween is over this year, but not for you. Your decorations are still ...


Gay News

Season's readings: Books to choose 2019-12-24 - So, it's a wrap. Everything's under paper and under the tree. You're done with all your shopping, except for one person. Or two. ...


Gay News

MOMBIAN Holiday gift guide for LGBTQ children's books 2019-12-11 - It's time for my annual gift guide to some of the year's best LGBTQ-inclusive children's picture books! There were happily more books published ...


Gay News

W&CF hosts 'Honeypot' book launch party, author discussion 2019-12-06 - One month after the release of Honeypot: Black Southern Women Who Love Women, Andersonville bookstore Women & Children First hosted a launch party ...


Gay News

December at Women & Children First to include Drag Queen Story Hour 2019-12-04 - CHICAGO, IL ( December 3, 2019 ) - As 2019 comes to a close, Women & Children First is proud to announce our ...


Gay News

Season's readings: Books to choose 2019-12-02 - So, it's a wrap. Everything's under paper and under the tree. You're done with all your shopping, except for one person. Or two. ...


 



Copyright © 2020 Windy City Media Group. All rights reserved.
Reprint by permission only. PDFs for back issues are downloadable from
our online archives. Single copies of back issues in print form are
available for $4 per issue, older than one month for $6 if available,
by check to the mailing address listed below.

Return postage must accompany all manuscripts, drawings, and
photographs submitted if they are to be returned, and no
responsibility may be assumed for unsolicited materials.
All rights to letters, art and photos sent to Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago
Gay and Lesbian News and Feature Publication) will be treated
as unconditionally assigned for publication purposes and as such,
subject to editing and comment. The opinions expressed by the
columnists, cartoonists, letter writers, and commentators are
their own and do not necessarily reflect the position of Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay,
Lesbian, Bisexual and Transegender News and Feature Publication).

The appearance of a name, image or photo of a person or group in
Nightspots (Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times
(a Chicago Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender News and Feature
Publication) does not indicate the sexual orientation of such
individuals or groups. While we encourage readers to support the
advertisers who make this newspaper possible, Nightspots (Chicago
GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay, Lesbian
News and Feature Publication) cannot accept responsibility for
any advertising claims or promotions.

 

 

 

TRENDINGBREAKINGPHOTOS

Sponsor
Sponsor
Sponsor


 



About WCMG Publications News Index  Entertainment Features Bars & Clubs Calendar Videos Advertisers OUT! Guide    Marriage


About WCMG      Contact Us      Online Front  Page      Windy City  Times      Nightspots      OUT! Guide     
Identity      BLACKlines      En La Vida      Archives      Subscriptions      Distribution      Windy City Queercast     
Queercast Archives      Advertising  Rates      Deadlines      Advanced Search     
Press  Releases      Event Photos      Join WCMG  Email List      Email Blast     
Upcoming Events      Todays Events      Ongoing Events      Post an Event      Bar Guide      Community Groups      In Memoriam      Outguide Categories      Outguide Advertisers      Search Outguide      Travel      Dining Out      Blogs      Spotlight  Video     
Classifieds      Real Estate      Place a  Classified     

Windy City Media Group publishes Windy City Times,
The Bi-Weekly Voice of the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Trans Community.
5315 N. Clark St. #192, Chicago, IL 60640-2113 • PH (773) 871-7610 • FAX (773) 871-7609.