Tabs open on your screen right now:

  • Google calendar
  • A short piece on the Four of Swords that Lily Hoang sent me the day of the election
  • A scan of Deborah Poe’s WING book project, with which I’m collaborating
  • Tanya Tagaq – I am listening to her a lot at the moment (and thinking of Anne Carson’s Cassandra: “I am just this sound. I will walk with my song torn open.”)
  • Anne Waldman’s essay, “Looking into the Darkness of One’s Time”

If you had to brag about yourself:
I make an excellent Sacred Heart Lamb Hoodoo Resurrection cake.
Here is proof (featuring assistant, Mathias Svalina):

Your writer crush:
I’m crushed out on all the books and their writers! Lately, Annah Anti-Palindrome. I saw her perform at Casa Libre in Tucson, AZ a few months ago and was blown away by the alchemical zone she generated through her performance. I just finished her book, DNA Hymn, and it is so exceptional. I’m in awe of how she constellates her work.

Favorite lyric:
“He screamed like a panther in the middle of the night”

From Willie Nelson’s In The Time of the Preacher (1975). Why? I can see my mother singing this with joy and abandon while driving our rusted-out Dodge Charger in the hell hot Mississippi summer on a Friday afternoon after a long work week in the mid 1980s.

Any place in the world:
Iceland’s thermal pools, Holt Cemetery in New Orleans, and the Roman Catacombs.

Best breakfast:
“Tiger Eggs” (made by Frankie Rollins) and mimosas (prepared by Kristen Nelson)

Favorite online places right now:
Akilah Oliver: 3 Readings a film by Ed Bowes (2011, 14:05)
Laura Mullen’s blog

Sweetest thing:
I am in the midst of transforming my entire loft into one giant interactive altar. It is very sweet because I am in love.

Your rituals (writing or not):
Holy Darkness & Underworld Wanderings

Least impressive thing about you:
Vanity and bouts of occasional desperation

Favorite space to write:
The Crossroads

What should we know:

Guilty literary pleasure:
Ugh. Fuck guilt.

Best book nobody talks about:
I have been nourished by many conversations about these writers and their work. Still, I don’t feel these books are celebrated nearly enough for their genius. These are extraordinary books!

  • Joan Fiset’s Now the Day is Over and Namesake
  • All books by Rebecca Brown, including The Gifts of the Body and Excerpts from a Family Medical Dictionary
  • The Sin Eater and Other Stories by Elizabeth Frankie Rollins
  • The Mayflies by Sara Veglahn
  • A Toast in the House of Friends by Akilah Oliver

Character (TV, book, movie) you most identify with:

  • All characters and every episode of Six Feet Under
  • Lilith in Midrash
  • Carrie in Carrie

Last time you lied:
The week after the election, I had a doctor’s appointment and during the in-take a nurse asked how much booze I consumed over the previous week. I thought she was joking so I chuckled. She gave me a stern look to let me know she was not joking around. Three, I lied.

Question you secretly want to be asked:
I want to ask you: Do you think there is a ghost, at this very moment, watching you?

The answer:

SELAH SATERSTROM is the author of the novels Slab, The Meat and Spirit Plan, The Pink Institution, and the book of essays, Ideal Suggestions: Essays in Divinatory Poetics, which was selected as the 2015 Essay Book Prize. With the poet HR Hegnauer, she curates Madame Harriette Presents, an occasional performance series. She teaches and lectures across the United States, and is Creative Writing faculty at the University of Denver.