Writing Miscarriage, Child Loss, and Complicated Childbirth in the Post-Roe Era

Room 2103C, Kansas City Convention Center, Street Level
Thursday, February 8, 2024
12:10 pm to 1:25 pm


What new urgency does the fall of Roe v. Wade create for writers who experience miscarriage, child loss, and childbirth? How does the use of form and persona complicate and elucidate these topics? What can be gained by exploring racist and sexist institutions of reproductive care through poetry? How can poetry order the chaos of this kind of grief into art? Five poets will discuss their process of writing reproductive elegies, from individual poems to chapbooks and full-length collections.

Outline & Supplemental Documents

Event Outline: AWP_Panel_Outline.pdf



Kate Gaskin is the author of the poetry collection Forever War (YesYes Books). Recently her poems have appeared in Ploughshares, TriQuarterly, and New Letters, among others. She edits poetry for The Adroit Journal and is a PhD student at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.

Joanna Solfrian’s first book, Visible Heavens, was chosen by Naomi Shihab Nye for the 2009 Wick Poetry Prize. She is also the author of The Mud Room, The Second Perfect Number, and the upcoming Temporary Beast. An educator in NYC, Solfrian is also a MacDowell fellow and six-time Pushcart nominee.

Leila Chatti is the author of Deluge (Copper Canyon Press, 2020) and multiple chapbooks. She teaches in the MFA program at Pacific University and is a provost fellow at the University of Cincinnati.

Niina Pollari is a poet and the author of the books Path of Totality (listed by the New York Times as one of the best poetry collections of 2022) and Dead Horse. She is also the translator, from the Finnish, of Tytti Heikkinen's collection The Warmth of the Taxidermied Animal.

Kwoya Fagin Maples is the author of Mend (University Press of Kentucky, 2018). A collection of historical persona poetry, Mend tells the story of the birth of obstetrics and gynecology in America and the role enslaved black women played in that process.


February 7–10, 2024
Kansas City, Missouri

Kansas City Convention Center