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PEN America Blog

July 1, 2015

I died for Easter day and resurrected just / Like him for a week at the hospital I was high on morphine / And the nurses all laughed at me because they thought I was addicted / To ketamine...

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June 30, 2015

"[Tell] it straight, tell it slant—just tell all of it. Anything that can be done on the page, probably should be. It doesn’t matter whether or not we, as readers, like it or agree with it."

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June 26, 2015

Bademosi writes about his life as a renowned Pentecostal preacher boy and exorcist, who fails to cure his twin sister of insanity or himself of homosexuality, until he finally comes out as gay.

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June 25, 2015

A satirical piece by poet Meena Kandasamy and artist Samita Chatterjee about the violence that erupted after the 2012 Hyderabad Beef Festival organized by lower-caste Dalit students at Osmania University.

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June 24, 2015

she would pull her headscarf off / and strike the floor seven times / cursing the heavens and the Tyrant / I was in the cave / where convicts read in the dark / and painted the bestiary of the future on the walls

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June 23, 2015

This is a fascinating time for literary translators into English, and a critical one. Where does the work of the PEN America Translation Committee fit into this changing landscape?

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June 19, 2015

I think if I popped you a bunch of snakes would wriggle out. Well go on then, you can say something, I think. I’m giving you permission, I said, knowing exactly how much it would irk you. So we kill each other tomorrow—nothing passionate there.

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June 18, 2015

The Puppet Makers is a graphic novel mystery set in an alternate historical Versailles where the city is run by clockwork and aristocrats wear robotic suits to go through the elaborate rituals that prescribe daily life.

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June 18, 2015

He remembers the evening when he was able to pick up his pen. “Our men’s group had a good discussion that lasted four hours,” he recalled. “Afterwards, I felt human again. And feeling human—that is what allowed me to write.

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June 17, 2015

I have a ring that throws up when a cat dies / I have a ring where instead of a jewel it has one of God’s baby teeth / I have a ring commemorating my marriage to a green skull with the wings of a moth / I have a ring that protects me from not having any rings / As long as I have this ring, I shall have rings

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