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The Cheburashka Collective Presents: Soviet Diaspora Poetry

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Featuring Gala Mukomolova, Ana Božičević, Alina Pleskova, Ruth Madievsky, Luisa Muradyan, Karina Vahitova & Julia Kolchinsky Dasbach

In the spirit of cheburashka, a childhood emblem during the last decades of communist power in Eastern Europe & beloved creature of famously unknown origin (an embodiment of displacement if we ever saw one!), we invite you to join us for a special poetry reading featuring women of the Soviet diaspora. 

As first-generation emigres & refugees, we often feel-- as collective member Gala recently said in an interview, "not from there and not from here, either"-- but on this evening, we're excited to gather together from all corners of the country to be here with you, & each other.

With readings by:

✧ Luisa Muradyan ✧
Luisa Muradyan is originally from Odessa, Ukraine and is currently a PhD candidate in Poetry at the University of Houston where she is the recipient of a College of Liberal Arts Dissertation Fellowship. She was the Editor-in-Chief of Gulf Coast: a Journal of Literature and Fine Arts from 2016-2018. She was also the recipient of the 2017 Prairie Schooner Book Prize and her book, American Radiance, is available from the University of Nebraska Press. Previous poems have appeared in Poetry International, the Los Angeles Review, West Branch, Ninth Letter, and Blackbird among others. 

✧ Gala Mukomolova ✧
Gala Mukomolova was born in Moscow, the city that doesn't believe in tears, and raised in Brighton Beach. In 2016, Mukomolova won the 92nd Street Y Discovery/Boston Review Poetry Prize. Her first chapbook, One Above / One Below : Positions & Lamentations is available from Yes Yes Books. Her full-length collection, Without Protection, is forthcoming Spring 2019 from Coffee House Press. She writes lyric astrology for NYLON.

✧ Ana Božičević ✧
Ana Božičević grew up in Croatia and moved to Brooklyn when she was 19. She is the author of Joy of Missing out (Birds, LLC, 2017), the Lambda Award-winning Rise in the Fall (Birds, LLC, 2013) and Stars of the Night Commute (Tarpaulin Sky Press, 2009). www.anabozicevic.com

✧ Alina Pleskova ✧
Alina Pleskova is an immigrant from Moscow turned proud Philadelphian, & a consummate Aquarius. Her first chapbook, What Urge Will Save Us, was published in April 2017 by Spooky Girlfriend Press. She co-edits bedfellows– a biannual print & online magazine that catalogs discussion of sex, desire, & intimacy– with Jackee Sadicario. Recent & forthcoming poems appear in American Poetry Review, Cosmonauts Avenue, Entropy, Peach Mag, & more. Find her at: alinapleskova.com & @nahhhlina.

✧ Ruth Madievsky ✧
Originally from Kishinev, Moldova, Ruth Madievsky is the author of a poetry collection, "Emergency Brake" (Tavern Books, 2016). Her work has appeared in Tin House, The American Poetry Review, Kenyon Review, and elsewhere. She lives in Boston, where she works as an oncology pharmacist. 

✧ Julia Kolchinsky Dasbach ✧
Julia Kolchinsky Dasbach emigrated from Dnepropetrovsk, Ukraine as a Jewish refugee at age six. She holds an MFA in Poetry from the University of Oregon and is a Ph.D. candidate in Comparative Literature at the University of Pennsylvania focusing on poetry about the Holocaust. Her collection, The Many Names for Mother, won the Stan and Tom Wick Poetry Prize and is forthcoming from Kent State University Press in fall of 2019. Author of the chapbook The Bear Who Ate the Stars (Split Lip Press), Julia’s recent poems appear in Best New Poets, American Poetry Review, and TriQuarterly, among others. She is Editor of Construction Magazine constructionlitmag.com and when not busy chasing her toddler around the playgrounds of Philly, she writes a blog about motherhood otherwomendonttellyou.wordpress.com.

✧ Karina Vahitova ✧
Karina Vahitova is a post-Soviet queer poet and movement artist from Kiev, Ukraine. She is certified rape crisis and domestic violence counselor and runs The Void Academy, helping artists learn how to make a living by building community. In 2017 she was a Lambda Literary Fellow in poetry. The sensorium is hard on her mind and she’s figuring out how to live within it by writing lyrical theory about the Soviet Union, queerness, totalitarianism, abstraction, and occasionally the violence of the alphabets. She lives in Los Angeles and sends her lyric essays out to her mailing list at karinavahitova.com