April Michelle Bratten’s ‘I Was Born Next to a Trolley Car’ appears in the newly published Slim Volume 3: This Body I Live In, and she is very much our sort of people. One day soon-ish we shall be buying her beer.
Who the fuck are you? I’m April, a weirdo poet and the obsessive (errr…I mean dedicated) editor of Up the Staircase Quarterly.
I have nothing to declare but my genius and … my forthcoming chapbook Anne with an E (dancing girl press).
Why the fuck should we care? Anne with an E is a group of persona poems based on the character of Anne from the 19th century Anne of Green Gables series by L.M. Montgomery. I borrowed Anne’s essence as well as her experiences from the books and twisted them into 22 corrupt and wicked poems. The poems undoubtedly embody Anne, but a side of Anne that we have never seen before. Persona poetry is my new girlfriend. I love the idea of further exploring well-known characters from a different perspective.
If Anne with an E was a song, a person, or a place, what/who would it be? And why? “A Place Called Home” by PJ Harvey. PJ sings, “One day there’ll be a place for us.” This is something that Anne (an orphan and an eccentric) would say. She is a loving character and an optimist, but she definitely had a dark side. Anne with an E fully explores the dark side of Anne, but the tone of the book is hopeful (I hope.)
You are about to be castaway with the author or fictional character of your choice. You’re going to be alone with them for a full year. Who would you choose? And why? Toni Morrison. Because she’s Toni Effing Morrison. I would love to pick her genius brain for an entire year.
I have seen the future of poetry and her name is …Brynne Rebele-Henry. Go forth and Google her now. She’s fantastic.
What is next for you? Hopefully another degree and some Southern Living.
Your three closest friends on the internet. Fuck, marry, kill. Go! You are gonna have to buy me a beer first.
Have you come to terms with your own mortality? By using extreme logic, complete denial, and/or I’m just a plain whack-a-doo, I have never been afraid of death or dying.
Tell us a secret. I am named after a poodle. I have learned to come to peace with this. Kind of.
I’m still not a fan of fucking poodles though.
Say something outrageous. Emus are terrifying and hideous creatures.
April Michelle Bratten currently lives in North Dakota. Her work has appeared or is forthcoming in Southeast Review, Zone 3, Thrush Poetry Journal, The Boiler Journal, and Gargoyle, among others. Her latest chapbook, Anne with an E, is forthcoming from dancing girl press in late 2015. She is the editor of Up the Staircase Quarterly. You can find out more at aprilmichellebratten.com.