Meet Our New Poetry Editors

Text by Crista Siglin and Natalie Mariko with an Introduction by Ashley Moore


Editorial Note: Crista Siglin is still with SAND as one of our co-poetry editors, and former poetry editor Natalie Mariko left SAND in 2019. We are very excited to have Emma Lawson on as our new poetry editor along with Crista. This article provides insight into SAND’s poetry style, and any future submissions should be sent to Crista and Emma.


AN INTRODUCTION TO AN INTRODUCTION

What do traditional artist’s introductions tell us? Biographical information, starting with current location. A list of publications, and if we’re lucky, an artist’s statement. The partners, dogs, parakeets, and children the artists might be living with in previously-mentioned current location.

When we asked our new poetry editors Natalie Mariko and Crista Siglin to introduce themselves, they agreed that this approach might “flatten” them rather than giving readers a “glimpse into their editing sensibilities,” according to Crista. So the two began with the traditional introductions and set out to “extend poetic abstraction/attention to the very boring, self-referential, wanky realm of artist introductions” by “deconstructing each other’s intros into poems.”

The idea was formed in a Berlin cafe, and the process was honed in a series of emails, during which our editors discussed deconstruction as introduction as well as deadlines and sick cats. As for the process, each editor would send over their traditional introductory “blurbs” and then each would “dissect” the other’s blurb into a poem. The discussion of process continued from there, along with more discussion of cats, and produced three poems that “introduce” each editor.

Natalie says the emails are actually the “better half of the two conceptual parts” since they are “the ghost in the machine made visible,” namely: “The process is all in there, not in me explaining why I moved a word to the next line” of the final poems, which are included at the end. Of the “essential” nature of the inclusion of the emails in this article, our poetry editors say:

“The drudgery of the sick cats, the banter–this is sort of @ the thematic heart of what I love to read. There is a cat vomiting on my carpet. The cat can’t help it. It just vomits, w/out want. An act of pure function. Poetry blames the cat. Or draws a connection btwn the cat retch & why the weather has been unseasonably warm. Or &c. The act of poetry is the attribution of intent to function, especially as it originates in the reader (in my example, Me watching the cat vomit). It blurs the definition btwn cat & weather. A type of willful schizophrenia.” — Natalie

“Poetry blames the cat. This for me has a morphic resonance with ‘Love’s the burning boy.’ An idea inflicting something on a character or object, and through that relationship, the nature of the idea can change alongside the character. ‘Casabianca’ by Elizabeth Bishop (in which the burning boy may be found) is one of my favorite examples of a poem subtly shifting expectation for how one word will defined throughout its course. Love’s meaning constricts and dilates, depending on the perspective and metaphorical highlighting. I always keep this in a corner of my mind. When I am writing or editing, I am looking for some way to expand or sharpen the meaning of a word. Whether it is through spacial means (this is how I approached editing Natalie’s introduction; through erasures and implementing space), repetition, or perspectival shifts.” — Crista

THE EMAILS

Natalie to Crista:

It’s fascinating to read about a colleague in this way–as if the person I will be seeing @ monthly meetings could be artistically reduced to a sort of list of acco.s & fixed opinions. I don’t know about you, but writing artist statements always made me feel rather pompous. Like sending a court clerk before me to announce my arrival. But perhaps even then there’s an artistry to something so seemingly banal as introduction, no? My thought is we limit this to no more than 3 volleys/editor, so as to avoid repetition.

Crista to Natalie:

Yes, I agree about both the banality and pomp of writing about oneself in this way. I had to cut a lot of words I was hiding under from mine…as well as graft different statements from different times together…yet I still feel hidden (but I couldn’t bear to start completely from scratch). It feels like writing about myself in this way misses most of the things for which I am actually proud of myself. But I can scarcely include “Crista can complete Jacob’s Ladder in ten seconds with her eyes closed.” It also misses one’s weaknesses. Like how many times I have to Google search the differences between certain words. Regardless, I am enjoying this exercise. Yours was quite fun to work with.

I hope your cat is okay.

Natalie to Crista:

Well, in terms of meeting that deadline, I’d classify this as ‘better late than never’. Now that we’ve given one another a raw rearrangement of the texts, perhaps it’d be fun to edit what the other’s made of them? And then perhaps thereafter combining them? Or? If you have something in mind, let me know. This is the most enjoyable writing task I’ve had in a solid few weeks.

The cats – Keala & Humus, the poor souls – are my roommate’s & the last I smelled they are quite ill. I have to help her give them two pills each every few hours which is painful for all of us.

Crista to Natalie:

I firmly believe in the better late than never philosophy.


CRISTA SIGLIN
By Natalie Mariko and Crista Siglin

ONE

Crista Siglin finds herself living 

in Berlin after                   having 

grown up (as much

                She creativestudied     

She 

chasing    ghosts playing with other 

people’s, food and watching her 

way slowly but surely 

She has shown 

her visual                 various Kansas City 

galleries 

                                in . Crista’s poetry has

Sprung Formal Compendium Not Sorry Retro

grade-Craft(ed) Desolate Country Poets, Un-

Against Finding Zen in Cow Town and Prosper

o  

She is the author of the poetry 

Fleeting Sacred Sparta

n Press(ing). Her practice

                            a body 

and the mind’s relation

ship to environmentraumatime 

phantasm            agoria. 

attracted: to delve into elements and themes common in theater 

and Other                                          dramatic 

platforms: to heighten psychological conditions (i.e. how specific 

can depict a spectrum                       She also enjoys

 

subverted folk

loric. Crista admires 

the paradoxical aspects of having 

a body, and its withstanding 

She finds the bodymind’s progression through time, 

and questions             definition and appearance 

in the present moment.

TWO

Crista finds 

herself           living 

in Berlin after                   having 

grown  (as much

            creativestudied     

chasing    ghosts     

                    playing 

 other 

people’s,

                      food 

and watching 

slowly but surely 

              has shown 

 visual                 various Kansas 

galleries 

                                in .

 poetry has

Sprung

Compendium (of) Not Sorry 

    Retro

grade-Craft(ed) 

       Desolate country Poets, Un-

                          Against Finding Zen in Cow Town 

and Prosper

o  

She is the author of 

poetry 

Fleeting 

Sacred Sparta

n Press(ing). Her practice

                            a body 

mind’s relation

       ship to environmentrauma

time 

phantasm            agoria. 

attracted: to delve 

elements 

      themes common 

             theater and Other                    dramatic 

platforms: 

       to heighten psychological 

conditions . 

            how specific 

                         a spectrum                       

 also 

     enjoys

subverted 

                     folk

loric. admires 

paradoxical aspects of having 

a body 

withstanding 

finds the bodymind’s 

progression through time, 

questions             definition a

appearance in the present 

moment.

THREE

a finds herself     

chasin    gghosts     

              playing other 

              people  

and watching 

slowly 

but 

surely  

visual various Kansas 

in poetry has SPRUNG

                     compendium of Not Sorry 

                     retro            

                     desolate country poet 

                     Un-Zen in Cow Town 

                     and pro(s)per

                     (o  

now) she is the author of

                            

                            a body 

       shipped to environmentraumatime 

phantasm            agoria. 

attracted: to delve                    

dramatic platforms: to heighten 

psychological conditions 

            (how specific a spectrum)                       

subverted folkloric paradoxical aspects of having 

a body 

withstanding 

finds the bodymind 

progression through time, 

questions             definition a

 

Natalie Mariko
By Crista Siglin and Natalie Mariko

 

ONE

Natalie Mariko was born 

3rd of 9 children.              After     

           Mathematics & Philosophy

African & English               Literature 

Film         Cape Town, 

      she forfeited 

her    (excessively 

expensive) place at Cambridge 

to move

        

Germany. She studied German 

in Munich & Dresden 

moved                         Berlin in March 

           She is fascinated

90s dark comedy films,      Bantu mythologies, 

            witchcraft & 

magic(k), post-

                    Soviet visual art, people 

who’ve actually read

                   Infinite          Jest and the 

documentation of 

queer experience. She 

                             participates 

regularly 

      Berlin writers’ 

 presents 

     her written 

               at readings w/ increasing 

                                     regularity. 

Her poetry appeared 

                 in Whirlwind 

all roads 

                             will lead you home

Contrast, YES        SUSAN, The Slanted House 

                                                  will be included 

an upcoming TABLOID is drawn

illuminates 

and tarries in the uncanny Language 

                          on the brinks — both 

deliberate semantic intention & types — most appealing; or 

         investigates 

            problematises 

                  lost silences 

& the echoing 

              chasms btwn intention

& interpretation.              her interests 

variegated 

to the point 

of whimsy, but the basic 

                               thru-line tends to be 

                        unexpected. 

TWO

Natalie

was born 

3rd      after     

           mathematics 

      

      she forfeited         her    

(excessively               to move

                                   studied

moved                         

 

                  berlinfascinated

                  darkcomedy      

                  film: Witchcraft & Magic K (post-

                  Soviet visual art people 

who actually read Infinite Jest and the 

documentation 

of queer experience) she 

                             participates 

regularly 

 

presents 

     her 

written 

               reading 

                                 regular

                                       -ity 

he          r in

              Whirlwind

              YES SUSAN, The Slanted House 

                                    will 

                                    be included 

an upcoming TABLOID is drawn

illuminates 

and tarries in the uncanny Language 

         

deliberate semantic intention & types     most appealing lost 

      silences 

& the echoing 

       btwn 

 

                               thru-line tends 

to be unexpected,

THREE

born 

3rd      after     

           mathematics 

      

      she forfeited          

(excessively             

  to

 move

                                   studied

moved                         

 

                  berlinfascinated

                  darkcomedy      

                 

 film: 

       Witchcraft & 

Magic 

(post-

                  Soviet visual 

art people 

who   read Infinite and 

 

documentation 

             queer experience) she 

                             participates 

regularly 

presents 

     

written 

               reading 

                                 regular

                                       -ity 

he          r in

              Whirlwind

              YES SUSAN, The Slanted House 

                                    will 

                                    be included 

an upcoming TABLOIDilluminates 

tarries 

in uncanny           

             Language 

             deliberate 

semantic intention &   

                             appealing 

lost 

                                       silences 

& the echoing 

       btwn 

           thru-line tends 

to unexpect