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A moving collection of essays that bring poetic insight to the sheer facts of the AIDS epidemic, in an attempt to make meaning from suffering.
Unbound is a poet's intimate account of life in San Francisco in the 80s and 90s during the apex of the AIDS epidemic. In his search for meaning, Shurin dives down into the broken-hearted, revelatory core of the social landscape and the lives of friends who both succumbed to and transcended the disease. Twenty-five years after its initial publication, Unbound continues the search, resonating inescapably with the perils of our new pandemic. Shurin brings to life a familiar world tensed on the threshold of living, balanced precariously on the edges of love and friendship, family and community, rapture and mourning.
About the Author
Aaron Shurin is the author of fourteen books of poetry and prose, most recently The Blue Absolute (Nightboat, 2020), Flowers & Sky: Two Talks (Entre Rios Books, 2017), and The Skin of Meaning: Collected Literary Essays and Talks (University of Michigan Press, 2015). His work has appeared in over forty national and international anthologies, from The Norton Anthology of Postmodern American Poetry to Italy's Nuova Poesia Americana: San Francisco, and has been supported by grants from The National Endowment for the Arts, The California Arts Council, The San Francisco Arts Commission, and the Gerbode Foundation. A pioneer in both LGBTQ studies and innovative verse, Shurin was a member of the original Good Gay Poets collective in Boston, and later the first graduate of the storied Poetics Program at New College of California. He has written numerous critical essays about poetic theory and compositional practice, as well as personal narratives on sexual identity, gender fluidity, and the AIDS epidemic. A longtime educator, he's the former director and currently Professor Emeritus for the MFA Writing Program at the University of San Francisco.