ECHOLALIA IN SCRIPT (Art/Asemic Writing, Orison Books) Available now
Echolalia in Script is a truly original marriage of visual art and poetry. Paired with lines of Roxas-Chua 姚‘s poetry are arresting works of his asemic visual work—artwork that imitates and plays with the idea of script, but which is a purely visual language. Asemic writing is a meditative process for Roxas-Chua 姚, and these images entrance, enrapture, and invite contemplation.
Michael Wiegers, Executive Editor, Copper Canyon Press | Here is writing that is entirely open to the world, a poetry that generously refuses to delimit the human experience or accept only what is known. While it may be defined as ‘asemic writing,’ such definition sterilizes what we have before us: a poetry that precedes language, a personally rhythmic grammar that plays among the tools of expression, and explores the outer boundaries of the rational as it searches for connection. In today’s literary climate, Echolalia in Script is refreshingly, breathtakingly transcendent.
Sandra Alcosser, author of Except by Nature and Sleeping Inside the Glacier | The first time I met Sam Roxas-Chua 姚 he invited me to view the nests he’d made of chewed poems. Perhaps a year later he told me that he swam in a vat of pulp to understand the life of paper. And one night he photographed wet Oregon pavement and through his lens transformed soaked sidewalks into Chinese silk panels. Everything Sam does is unscripted. Everything he does is exquisite. His collection of asemic writing, Echolalia in Script, is sublime. Read more recommendations for Echolalia in Script.
SAYING YOUR NAME THREE TIMES UNDERWATER (Poetry, Lithic Press) Available now
Marvin Bell, author of Nightworks; Vertigo: The Living Dead Man Poems; Whiteout, a collaboration with photographer Nathan Lyons; and After the Fact: Scripts & Postscripts. Former Iowa Poet Laureate | Sam Roxas-Chua 姚 is a natural. He is an exciting and original poet of profound imagination that can lift off from any situation…an artist through and through.
Tyehimba Jess, author of Leadbelly (Wave, 2005) and Olio (Wave, 2016); Winner of the 2017 Pulitzer Prize in Poetry | Sam Roxas-Chua 姚’s poetry is swirling and galactic, vividly sensual, and delightfully stubborn in its refusal to entertain simple answers to queries of blood, faith, and desire. Surreal yet rooted in palpable color and history, this poet’s vision transcends oceans, blends geographies and bleeds a multi-tongued heritage for us to better find ourselves. We need more maps like this in the world, and cartographers of language like Sam Roxas Chua 姚.
Joseph Stroud, author of Signatures (1982); Below Cold Mountain (1998); Country of Light (2004), a finalist for the 2005 Northern California Book Critics Award; and Of This World: New and Selected Poems (2008). Awarded the Lannan Foundation Lifetime Achievement Award | Every now and then a unique, distinctive voice will appear on the literary scene, as if from out of nowhere. Such is the case with Sam Roxas-Chua 姚. His mysterious poems teem with apparitions of the marvelous, as if we have entered some other dimension. His imagination is haunted by family and the primal scene, with ancestral spirits from China and the Philippines. Here are poems that push the boundaries of language, that shimmer with almost a mythic or visionary quality, poems that encounter what he calls “luminous questions.” There is such a richness and amplitude in his work. The poems in Saying Your Name Three Times Underwater will take you on a journey to where you have never been before. Read more recommendations for Saying Your Name Three Times Underwater.