In March of this year, Alex Gallo-Brown sent me an email about a book of poems called The Language of Grief, with a link to a Kickstarter page and [in part] this message:
[I]mportant to the publication of my book is the development of a gift-giving community: the idea of giving around the corner, people’s artwork, their gifts, moving through the world to places they cannot yet conceive. Many of you are poets, writers, artists, whether you are published, whether you show your work or not. Many of you make things other than traditional artwork in your spare time — spoons, sweaters, etc. Others of you have access to knowledge that is unusual, that is valuable. I hope that you will pledge to give this secret knowledge, this artwork, this poem, to someone else. In return, I will provide the name and contact information of another person in the community in addition to a copy of my book. In the event that it costs you money to deliver your gift — to transport a painting, say — I would be happy to apply some of the money raised to offset that cost.
As an enthusiastic fan of Lewis Hyde’s The Gift, I wanted to know how and even if this would work, so I asked Alex a few questions about the book and about the gift-giving community. Continue reading