Honeysuckle Press is a literary press committed to expanding and redefining human truths by prioritizing the narratives of unsung communities.
our 2018 prose chapbooks
Things That Cannot Be Tamed by Khristian Mecom
introduction by lidia yuknavitch
Things That Cannot Be Tamed explores three generations of women as they survive, struggle, and thrive in a harsh and beautiful Alaskan landscape. These stories wonder and interrogate — does the place you’re from intrinsically define you? Or is that a choice you make? How much of our lives are shaped by those who have come before us? How do we impact what is beyond us?
Mecom weaves three tales into a saga of womanhood, self-determination, and the magic of stretching into the unknown: Ida, an aging and sensible pilot who feels most sure in the sky; Ruth, a restless mother reluctant to believe in others, in herself; and Arna, a woman who trusts the land like it is her body. In these stories, love and survival circle each other sharply within a landscape of the fantastic and magical — Mecom welcomes us to her hearth and illuminates truths believed in the bones.
Adolescence, Secondhand by Francisco Delgado
Introduction by Craig Santos Perez
In Adolescence, Secondhand, Francisco Delgado offers flashes of boyhood through a subtle dissection of class, race, and the failure of American suburban dreams. Houses burn and firecrackers pop while children navigate the ever-present violences that float within their lives. The writing is succinct and fantastical -- Delgado poignantly renders a world of ache, wonder, and longing onto the page.
Both stumbling and sure, Delgado's narrator Chris strives to reconcile a cultural menagerie of TV shows and wrestling heroes with the blurred reality of friendship, family, and self. These stories are tightly crafted and quietly crushing: within them, we join Chris and bear witness to a multitude of griefs, and the joys hidden and discovered in their core.
Dislocate by Simone Person
PROSE WINNER OF THE 2017 HONEYSUCKLE CHAPBOOK CONTEST
The stories in Dislocate are lamentations of the desperate and devoted, featuring ravenous fish lovers and dream-filled runaways marked by lightning. Equally surreal and mundane, the characters in these stories both devastate and are devastated in their claustrophobic yearnings for connection. Dislocate explores the things that force our bodies and selves out of space in time, navigating breakups, sleepovers, and the banality of a dinner party. Simone Person’s prose is both haunting and hilarious, her characters ever grasping for something real, the love they seek as elusive as clouds of smoke.
This book questions: what happens to us when we want to exist in the world, but can’t?
our 2018 poetry chapbooks
The Bitter Map by Crystal Boson
Poetry Winner of the 2017 Honeysuckle Chapbook Contest
The Bitter Map is a restless arc of poems, collecting rituals, warnings, and survival stories. These poems hope to offer guidance to Black and queer folks on how to survive in hostile landscapes, and draw up religious, cultural and land memory maps to help them find a way back home. Learn in this book the ways trauma tethers itself through ancestry, the chameleon face of bigotry, the cataclysm that the elements rain down onto its most vulnerable spectators. The Bitter Map dictates a trail marked by the inescapable. Something always breathing down the neck; hot winds ushering in a storm, the humid breath of white fragility.
The Bitter Map is a tale of forced migration and a collection of the necessary stories along the way. This book will lead you to the gospel in the soil, just beneath the surface.
Oracle: A Cosmology by Destiny Hemphill
2017 HONEYSUCKLE CHAPBOOK CONTEST POETRY FINALIST
INTRODUCTION BY MAHOGANY BROWNE
Oracle: A Cosmology explores lineage and family narrative by meditating on questions of loss, haunting, resistance, and personal & communal liberation. Entangling narratives of women who have been honed by hardship, this chapbook exists as an archive of intimate kin history. In weaving these true myths, Destiny makes the familial cosmic. Exploring memory and mourning, Oracle: a Cosmology gestures towards the possibility of loss as generative and transformative, and grief as a channel to the divinity that is within. In these poems, healing is not linear, but a disruptive and sacred process.
Destiny confesses, yes, i still remember how it feels to be / under the swollen tongue of a god’s gaping mouth. This cosmology is one for the people, and the people, they are ethereal.