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Join us for an electrifying evening of poetry as four bold writers from diverse backgrounds come together on the stage to explore their common experiences of loss through time and history. Navigating losses of home, of life, and of identity—from a family displaced by war to an examination of videos capturing police killing civilians—these local poets will read from their uncompromising work that perseveres despite loss by searching for ways to rise up and recover.

Chiwan Choi

Chiwan Choi is the author of 3 collections of poetry, The FloodAbductions, and The Yellow House. He wrote, presented, and destroyed the novel Ghostmaker throughout the course of 2015. Chiwan is a partner at Writ Large Press, a downtown Los Angeles based indie publisher, focused on using literary arts to resist, disrupt, and transgress.

Ashaki M. Jackson

Ashaki M. Jackson is the author of two chapter-length collections – LANGUAGE LESSON (Miel) and SURVEILLANCE (Writ Large Press). Jackson serves as a VIDA: Women in Literary Arts executive board member and is co-founder of Women Who Submit. She is a social psychologist living in Los Angeles, CA.


TK Lê is an LA-based introvert and disorganized organizer. Her writing is often focused on her family, war trauma, and memory. She has two chapbooks, A Roof & Some Refuge and The Labor of Longing, and her latest project is a story about a Vietnamese grandma who gets stuck in a teleportation device. She turns to cats, crafting, and Steven Universe for therapy.

Natalie J. Graham

A native of Gainesville, Florida, Natalie J. Graham earned her M.F.A. in Creative Writing at the University of Florida and completed her Ph.D. in American Studies at Michigan State University. Her poems have appeared in Callaloo, New England Review, Valley Voices: A Literary Review and Southern Humanities Review; and her articles have appeared in The Journal of Popular Culture and Transition. She is a Cave Canem fellow and assistant professor of African American Studies at California State University, Fullerton. Begin with a Failed Body, her first full-length collection of poems, won the 2016 Cave Canem Poetry Prize and is forthcoming from University of Georgia Press, September 2017.

Reservation Policy for Free Programs:
As most ALOUD at Central Library programs are free of charge, it is our policy to overbook. In the case of a FULL program your free reservation may not guarantee admission. We recommend arriving early. Space permitting, unclaimed reservations will be released to standby patrons at approximately 7 PM.

Standby Policy:
Standby numbers are distributed in person only one hour before the program, on a first-come, first-served, basis. There is no advance wait list for full programs. Standby patrons will be admitted subject to availability. Most programs will be available via podcast.

Book Signing Policy:
ALOUD is one of many free programs at the Los Angeles Public Library made possible by the Library Foundation of Los Angeles. Most ALOUD author programs are followed by book signings. At least one copy of the author’s book must be purchased from The Library Store in order to participate in any post-program book signing, and you will be asked to show proof of purchase. Please be prepared to show your proof of purchase when you enter the book signing line. Proceeds support the Los Angeles Public Library.


Main Image: Signs of Change: Social Movement Cultures, 1960s to Now (Cover); Edited by Josh MacPhee, Dara Greenwald, Mary Anne Staniszewski