Sari Krosinsky is a queer autistic writer. Ze has written three books of poetry, “Courting Hunger” (2015), “A God’s Life” (2015) and “god-chaser” (CW Books 2012) and co-authored a chapbook, “Yossele: a tale in poems” (2010), with Robert Arthur Reeves. Ze published Fickle Muses, an online journal of mythic poetry, fiction and art from 2007 to 2017. Ze received a B.A. in religious studies (2003) and an M.A. in creative writing (2006) from the University of New Mexico. Ze lives in Bremerton, WA, with zir partner, Reeves.
Sari’s latest posts from outerchildpoetry.com
In November I was officially diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). It's such a relief to finally have objective confirmation. I'd suspected for three years before that, since a friend suggested I take the Aspie Quiz (a research-based online quiz which seems to be a common starting point for autistics not diagnosed in childhood, as well as a good way to learn about autism). It took so long because I had trouble finding anyone who'd test adults for ASD in New Mexico, and though I found a number of qualified doctors in Washington, it took me a year to find one who'd accept Medicare.
As I've become more aware of how autism shapes my life, it's become a more defined theme in my poetry. Two recent poems dealing with autistic meltdowns (among other things) are in the current issue of Wordgathering: A Journal of Disability Poetry and Literature. The text is accompanied by audio recordings. The subject also cropped up in my poetry long before I suspected or knew anything about it. It seems pretty obvious now in this poem from my first book, "god-chaser":
She squints and unsquints,
makes letters resolve
and dissolve on the blackboard.
She’s six years old,
can say it properly now,
though she recalls with a blush
how she used to say
she’s tree years old.
She reminds herself
she can add and subtract
better than anyone,
even if she can’t
make the letters stay straight
long enough to copy them.
If she could, she’d subtract
herself from the room.
Pencils scratch fast
all around her. She can’t unblur
the bent faces either,
can’t mark the lines
of their easy play,
can’t find a smile
in the haze of their lips.
(A note on the poem: Though I now use gender-neutral pronouns ze/zir or they/them, I've kept the feminine-gendered pronouns in the poem because, while I had already started identifying as neither a boy nor a girl, I knew of no correct pronoun to change to when I was six.)
In other news, the literary open mic I've been organizing in Bremerton is moving to the Downtown Bremerton Library on second Wednesdays starting January 10, 6-8 p.m. (RSVP on Facebook or Meetup.) Open mic host is kind of a funny occupation for an autistic. I can do it because I have Bob to take on the parts of the job that are beyond me (like the essential mysteries of small talk), or to take over hosting entirely when, as occurred once already in the fall, I'm too overwhelmed by noise/light/motion/etc. (aka sensory overload) to speak aloud or do anything but refrain from having a meltdown (supposing I can manage that much). I'm hoping the library will be a more sensory-friendly space, where I can be more sociable as well as take in more of the literary libations being offered. If you're in Kitsap, hope to see you there!
Summer Poetry News
Lately I've been hosting an open mic in Bremerton, organized by members of the Bremerton Writer's Meetup. The next two are scheduled on July 21…
Yesterday, on the way to a nonbinary and gender nonconforming art event (where I got to do a bit of art modeling for the first time…
Poetry and Moss in the Northwest
Since moving from sunny Albuquerque to soggy Bremerton, Bob and I found reading we both like quite a bit at the Hugo House in Seattle,…
Ramblings on identity politics and what the heck a Maude activist is
For a while, my standard bio has included "writer, artist, Maude activist and novice game-maker" and omitted the rest of my potential laundry list of…
Watch Our Farewell Reading to New Mexico
It took us a while to get the captions right, but the video from our last New Mexico reading is finally ready! Meanwhile, I'm loving…
Find books and more on Sari Krosinsky’s poetry blog at outerchildpoetry.com