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Nicholas Gulig



Nicholas Gulig

Nicholas Gulig is a Thai-Anerican poet from Wisconsin and is currently the poet laureate of the state where he was born.

About Their Work:

Nicholas’s Gulig’s vivid narratives aren’t the ones you learn about in songs about American Pie or the opportunities to love open to the brave.  If they are songs about anything, they are about what Hannah Arendt called the modern loss of the world: our imprisonment in the personal and social.  And they have their own fitful bravery.  They often begin in the kind of isolated thoughts that hang from our heads like a medallion of modernity:  images and memories that isolate us in the enchanted prison of white American, most favored nation privilege.  The poems remain insistently restless, uneasy, antithetically charged.  Their words can be lyric, nostalgic, richly anaphoric—

to drive to work

in a green car singing,

to have insurance, to listen

to the radio, the county

road in autumn,

the light collected

in the maples, in the birches,

but this green path of introspection doesn’t lead to some kind of personal revelation, but is instead an attempt to break the spell that keeps us from seeing with more than the light we already have.  What Gulig always struggles to imagine, and helps us to see, is the suffering outside  our walled, poisoned personal and national gardens, and the difficult task we have to be ourselves and be responsible to the violated world at the same time.

Follow On:

Instagram @nickgulig


Books (for purchase):

Orient (Cleveland State University Poetry Center, 2018)

North of Order (YesYes Books, 2015)

Book of Lake (CutBank, 2015)

Online Work:

Read for Margin Shift:

May 20, 2023

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