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Today’s conversation is with poet, visual artist, editor, and podcast host Gabrielle Bates. The poems in Bates’ debut poetry collection Judas Goat feel both personal and mythic, violent and tender, human and much more than human, with an effect that haunts the reader long after closing the book. They also have a fascinating relationship to story, and by extension to time, and to the image and the mysterious relationship between words on the page and images in our minds. In her own words Bates describes Judas Goat as follows: “Within the book I see a woman wrestling her various hauntings: the specter of sexual violence, anxieties around attachment and marital commitment, motherlessness, queerness, Biblical figures, education, her reliance on (and distrust of) the visual. What haunts the speaker of Judas Goat most is what she’s been taught, how she’s been trained.”
For three lucky new supporters of Between the Covers, Gabrielle Bates is offering two 30-minute poetry consultations and an annotated advance copy of Judas Goat, containing anecdotes about the poems, background about them, and the poet’s own inside scoop about how they came to be written. These are only a few of many possible rewards and gifts for joining the Between the Covers community as a listener-supporter. The bonus audio archive (with contributions from everyone from Jorie Graham, Dionne Brand, Nikky Finney, Layli Long Soldier, Alice Oswald, and more), the Tin House early readership subscription, collectibles from everyone from Ama Codjoe to Ursula K. Le Guin and much more. You can check it all out at the show’s Patreon page.
And here is today’s episode’s Bookshop.