9/28: Book Launch for Paul Hlava Ceballos' banana [ ]

Date: Wednesday, September 28th at 7 PM

Location: Hugo House (1634 11th Ave, Seattle 98122)


Join us for the launch celebration of banana [ ], the debut book by Paul Hlava Ceballos. The event will feature Quenton Baker, Jane Wong, Michelle Peñaloza, Alex Gallo-Brown and plantains from Garzón: Latinx Street Food. Books will be for sale from Open Books.

Paul Hlava Ceballos’s AWP Prize-winning banana [ ] reveals the extractive relationship the U.S. has with the Americas through poetic portraits of migrants, family, and personal memories. The title poem traces the history of bananas in Latin America using only found text, from sources such as history books, declassified CIA documents, and commercials. Traversing language and borders, history and story, this book guides us beyond survival to love.

Quenton Baker is a poet, educator, and Cave Canem fellow. His current focus is black interiority and the afterlife of slavery. His work has appeared in The Offing, Jubilat, Vinyl, The Rumpus and elsewhere. He is a two-time Pushcart Prize nominee, and a 2021 NEA Fellow. He is the author of we pilot the blood (The 3rd Thing, 2021) and ballast, forthcoming from Haymarket in 2023.

Jane Wong is the author of How to Not Be Afraid of Everything (Alice James, 2021) and Overpour (Action Books, 2016). A Kundiman fellow, she is the recipient of a Pushcart Prize and fellowships and residencies from Harvard's Woodberry Poetry Room, the U.S. Fulbright Program, Artist Trust, Hedgebrook, Willapa Bay, the Jentel Foundation, and others. Her debut memoir, Meet Me Tonight in Atlantic City, is forthcoming from Tin House.

Michelle Peñaloza is the author of Former Possessions of the Spanish Empire, winner of the 2018 Hillary Gravendyk National Poetry Prize (Inlandia Books, 2019), landscape/heartbreak (Two Sylvias, 2015), and Last Night I Dreamt of Volcanoes (Organic Weapon Arts, 2015). The proud daughter of Filipino immigrants, Michelle was born in the suburbs of Detroit, MI and raised in Nashville, TN. She now lives in rural Northern California.

Alex Gallo-Brown is a poet, fiction writer, and essayist based in Seattle. He is the author of The Language of Grief (2012), a self-published collection of poems, and Variations of Labor (Chin Music Press, 2019), a collection of poems and stories. He currently lives in Seattle with his wife and children, where he works as a union organizer. 

Garzón: Latinx Street Food was named by The Stranger as one of the “15 best restaurants in the greater Seattle area.” Their mission is to present food the same way Chef Jose Garzon ate it growing up, preserving the history and honoring the amazing culture.