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‘Blood is Not the Water’: Mara Panich discusses grief and desire

Mara Panich
Mara Panich

This week, Lauren is speaking with poet and bookseller (and bookstore owner!) Mara Panich, whose debut collection, Blood is Not the Water, is a meditation on the body, its desires, its vulnerabilities, and often its sorrows. The voices in these poems are bold and defiant, especially in the most tender of moments. Blood is Not the Water is a collection of exaltations and admissions—of what it is like to be governed by one’s body, of the body’s comforts and discomforts, of gratitude.

About Mara:

Mara Panich is a writer, artist, and the owner of Fact & Fiction Books in Missoula, Montana. She holds a B.A. in Creative Writing and English Literature from Purdue University and completed post-graduate studies at the University of Montana. She is the author of Blood is Not the Water (FootHills Publishing, 2021), and her work has been published in CutBank Online, The Bitchin' Kitsch, Awake in the World, V2, Women Under Scrutiny, We Leave the Flowers Where They Are, and other anthologies.

Mara Panich recommends:

Postcolonial Love Poem by Natalie Diaz (Graywolf Press)

Matrix by Lauren Groff (Riverhead Books)

Cloud Cuckoo Land by Anthony Doerr (Simon & Schuster)

The Stone Sister by Caroline Patterson (Black Lawrence Press)

Lauren Korn recommends:

Descended from a Travel-Worn Satchel by Chris La Tray (FootHills Publishing)

Deluge by Leila Chatti (Copper Canyon Press)

My Body is a Book of Rules by Elissa Washuta (Red Hen Press)

Lauren R. Korn holds an M.A. in poetry from the University of New Brunswick, where she was the recipient of the Tom Riesterer Memorial Prize and the Angela Ludan Levine Memorial Book Prize. She is the Director of the Montana Book Festival and the host of Montana Public Radio’s literature-based radio program and podcast, The Write Question.
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