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Oct. 26, 2022

In Flint They Don't Name the Streets for Us

In Flint They Don't Name the Streets for Us

This is a conversation with Sarah Carson about her book of poems, How to Baptize a Child, in Flint, MI. Carson's poems are a jarring portrayal of life in a declining, once mighty, and still proud American rustbelt town.

Spanning girlhood to motherhood, How to Baptize a Child in Flint, Michigan, traces the lineage of four generations of a Flint, Michigan family--from the trailer park to the factory floor to, perhaps, a future far away. These poems examine the wreckage of the American Dream and ask who will answer for the promises we were made to believe as children: God? Industry? America? If we are all a part of the problem, are we also all a part of the cure?

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This book won the 2022 Lexi Rudnitsky Editors Choice Award, a poetry collection that portrays quintessentially American struggles and hopes.
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Carson peeks inside the windows of Flint's working class with a searing indictment of a society responsible for the ghastly moral failures resulting in massive unemployment and poisoned water.
 
The featured poem, How to Baptise a Child in Flint, Michigan, raises the disquieting thought of baptizing a baby with poisoned water. This leaves the reader to consider the sacred rites of baptism, with its biblical foundation in the concept of grace and mercy, all while harming an innocent baby with poisoned water.
 
Carson's brilliant and expressive description of life in a formerly middle-class city, along with her subtle references to the biblical principles of grace and mercy, that this poetry finds its genius.

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Sarah Carson was born in Flint, Michigan. She now lives in East Lansing, Michigan, with her daughter and two dogs, who make a guest appearance on the podcast. After college, she spent ten years working with literary organizations in Chicago, including the Poetry Foundation and Switchback Books. 

Sarah is the author of two prose poetry collections, Buick City (Mayapple Press, 2015) and Poems in which You Die (BatCat Press), as well as the forthcoming How to Baptize a Child in Flint, Michigan (Persea Books, Nov 1, 2022). Her poetry and other writing have appeared in Diagram, Brevity, Guernica, the Minnesota Review, and others. You can read more of her work at stuffsarahwrote.com

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This book of poetry will be available on November 1, 2022, at the following retailers and is now available for pre-print orders:



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Sarah Carson Profile Photo

Sarah Carson

Poet

Sarah Carson was born in Flint, Michigan where she was a frequent contributor to the Flint Journal's Wide Awake Club and once an honorary ringmaster at the Shrine Circus.

After college, she spent 10 years working with literary organizations in Chicago including the Poetry Foundation and Switchback Books.

In 2017, she moved back to the Flint area for a few years, before eventually landing in East Lansing, Michigan, where she now lives with her daughter and two dogs.

She is the author of the poetry collection Buick City and the forthcoming How to Baptize a Child in Flint, Michigan. Her work has appeared most recently in the Cincinnati Review, Juked, the Missouri Review and Copper Nickel.