Black Lawrence Press

Perceived Distance from Impact

hilliardcw

From “PYTHON”: 

def is used to define a function. a function
stores an action [or series of actions].
equality requires more resources, and is repped
by two equal signs. inequality is denoted
by an exclamation point and an equal sign.
PYTHON’s IDE is called IDLE and i’m glad it’s got time
for me. pypy’s indentation mirrors the code’s execution.
a well written PYTHON program can do anything
[mostly]. the most common programming error
is the syntax error. PYTHON does not understand you.
stop mumbling. PYTHON needs you to bend and fix
your snapback. Youtube loves PYTHON. Sam Jackson
in Snakes on a Plane does not love PYTHON.
if PYTHON is a euphemism for dick,
which it is, i too, love PYTHON. Aaron Schwartz
[the less sexist co-founder of Reddit] called programming
languages magic, which makes me Jafar in this bitch.
an Integrated Development Environment known as an IDE
is the globeless world before god. new Rollercoaster
Tycoon career file. when PYTHON say language,
it mean language. it means another way toward love.

Praise

  • The poems in Kamden Hilliard’s PERCEIVED DISTANCE FROM IMPACT are doing the most! Fragmented & fractured & fabulous & technocratic—they grip you by your collar scruff & drag you in. This poet’s scope is transnational & transhistoric & transcendent. The poems are like a globe turning wetly in the mouth. The deft incorporation & pastiche of various registers makes the reading experience of this book a panoply of 'godDAMN' & 'More Please.' Read this now!

    —sam sax, author of All the Rage, sad boy / detective, and A Guide to Undressing Your Monsters
  • Kamden Hilliard spares nothing. Whip-smart and poly-vocal, these poems are hyper-attuned to and deeply uncomfortable with their place against a "sunset pickled with smog," and their interrogation of this position—"queer"/ "Black"/ "millennial"/ "American"/ "poet"/ "student"/ "son"—takes place at a level rarely seen by poets several times their age. That prodigy thing aside, Hilliard's rapid-fire code-switching between encyclopedically varied high/low references (cinematic, scholarly, familial) is undeniably brutal but buoyed by a smirk at the absurdity of "all these aberrations," which keeps the ride fun. At the crossroads of globalization and depersonalization, these poems coast glibly through Hong Kong, Tinder, D.W. Griffith films, Hawai'i, the barbershop, Chicago, not-being-in-Chitown. All the while, even while in places as horrifying as the Rainforest Cafe, these poems are "poppin' bottles" and seeking "another way towards love."

    —Nina Puro, author of The Winter Palace and Elegy with Pilot Light
  • Kamden Hilliard’s PERCEIVED DISTANCE FROM IMPACT immerses and dispositions its readers at the same time. Their exciting travel poetics examines the tension between the Asian and other spaces and their black queer Amerikkkan self reminds us that the world, like the poet’s own description of their body, constantly overwhelms us with “disruption and oddity.” Wherever the speaker is, they are rooted and dislocated, determined and confused. The various registers and discourses in this “global manuscript” glues us like a montage sequence, and the boldness and strangeness stick and stay. “[Travel] is a needy needy boy,” so is Hilliard in their first uncompromising attempt to emerge with their contemplation on the opacity of cities.

    —Nicholas Wong, author of Crevasse, winner of Lambda Literary Award

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Kamden Hilliard

Kamden Hilliard reads for Gigantic Sequins, edits Jellyfish Magazine, and goes by Kam. They got love from The NFAA, The Ucross Foundation, VSC, Lambda Literary, and Callaloo. The author of two chapbooks, DISTRESS TOLERANCE (Magic Helicopter Press, 2016) and PERCEIVED DISTANCE FROM IMPACT (Black Lawrence Press, 2017), Kam stays busy. Find their poems and essays in The Black Warrior ReviewWest BranchMuzzle MagazineThe Hawaii Review, and other sunspots.

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