New Today: Volcano by Elosham Vog

The poems in Volcano (Unsolicited Press) work together to tell a story.

For his whole life, F’s unnamed lover has had a volcano growing inside him, fueled by experiences such as interactions with an abusive father and repressed queerness. As his relationship with F sours, the volcano continues to grow and eventually manifests as a physical reality. Fearing the consequences of the now-real volcano, he sacrifices F to it, believing he has solved both problems at once. However, F returns in ghost form and takes control of the volcano. Assisted by an army of shape-shifting spirits, she pursues the man around their island home until, eventually, he must face her. Though she is not given a voice in the text, Volcano is F’s story, conveyed and mediated through the eyes of the male character (and a chorus of divorced birds who comment upon the action). Set simultaneously in ancient Greece, contemporary Hawai’i, and the British isles at all points in time, Volcano is a reply to dominant narratives of relationships and gender in the “traditional” literary canon. ​

Following a transient childhood, Elosham came of age in the surreal spaces of the American midwest and west coast, but soon left again. Volcano was written and edited during periods residing in the UK, China, Greece, and the USA.  ◊

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