#TPQ5: JESSIE LYNN McMAINS

Kids of the Black Hole – Marty Cain

As I find myself writing more and more very long poems, I keep returning to this book-length poem because it’s a perfect example of how to do a long poem well. It’s dark and beautiful and punk as hell.

Reversible – Marisa Crawford

‘90s nostalgia, but make it weird. Full of pop-cultural references that you don’t have to get all of to love the poems, but that I love so much more because I do.

Book of Nightmares – Galway Kinnell

This book broke me open when I read it last year. I would not be writing what I write now had I not read it.

Here Comes Hell – Allie Marini

Southern gothic poetry. Rage and sorrow made gorgeous; you can taste the heat and decay of Florida in every line. while they sleep

While They Sleep (under the bed is another country) – Raquel Salas Rivera

Untranslatable grief, untranslatable bodies. A life lived with parts of you divided by other people’s borders and rules; the poetic embodiment of the third space.


Jessie Lynn McMains is a multi-genre writer. Their writing has appeared in many publications, including Moonchild Magazine, Vamp Cat Magazine, Kissing Dynamite, and Corvid Queen. They are the author of several chapbooks, most recently The Girl With the Most Cake and forget the fuck away from me. They were the recipient of the 2019 Hal Prize for poetry, and were the 2015-2017 Poet Laureate of Racine, WI. They are editor/publisher of Bone & Ink Press. You can find their website at recklesschants.net, or find them on Twitter, Tumblr, and Instagram @rustbeltjessie

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