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Soft Launch with poet Aaron Belz & Ariel Felton

  • The Book Lady Bookstore 6 Esat Liberty Street Savannah, GA (map)

Aaron Belz's fourth book of poems, Soft Launch, was just published this fall 2019 by Persea Books. Publishers Weekly opines, “…[Belz] acutely observes his fellow humans—especially millennials—and uses these observations to weave text-speak and startup jargon into rich moments that feel entirely human.” Belz is originally from St. Louis and moved to Savannah last summer with his partner, journalist Araceli Cruz. His other works include the collections The Bird Hoverer (BlazeVOX, 2007), Lovely, Raspberry (Persea 2010), and Glitter Bomb (Persea 2014).

Belz's publisher Persea says, With fluster, bluster, and, occasionally, mustard, Aaron Belz absurdly goes where many middle-aged white men have gone before, but few have described with such insight and pomp. In Soft Launch, he surveys the banal, the grinding quotidian, and asks not, ”Is this all?” , but rather “Isn’t this not all?” and then he bows his head either to pray or to nap.

You can't read these other words of praise for Belz's work and not be compelled to come hear Belz read in person...

Aaron Belz is a gravely hilarious poet. The poems from The Bird Hoverer are part Discovery Channel, part History Channel, part E!—his ferocious intelligence, his love of glitz, and his wry take on relationships (both human and animal) are irresistible. Belz's voice is bold, wise, inimitable. —Denise Duhamel

Aaron Belz's poetry reminds us that poetry should be bright, friendly, surprising, and totally committed to everything but itself. Reading him is like dreaming of a summer vacation and then taking it.—John Ashbery

Ariel Felton is an essayist and journalist from Byron, Georgia. Her writing has been published in The Progressive, The Bitter Southerner, McSweeney’s, Under the Gum Tree, Scalawag Magazine, and more. Her book review column Well, Lit is published monthly in Do Savannah. Felton currently serves as a teaching artist and publications manager at the nonprofit Deep Center in Savannah.

The Deep Center was founded in 2008 to address the detrimental effects of poverty on literacy in Savannah, Georgia.

Since its founding in 2008, the Deep has supported more than 3,800 young people with fully funded scholarships to its creative-writing, arts, and leadership programs, and published more than 100 anthologies of youth work, trained more than 270 local writing mentors, hosted live readings reaching diverse audiences of 10,000, and shared Savannah’s stories around the nation.