photo by zack garlitos

At eight years old, A.W. Strouse was so titillated by the Old Testament that he built a sacrificial altar in his parents’ front lawn. He prayed that God would fill him with the Word, but no divine inspiration was forthcoming. Instead, Strouse’s earthly father spanked him heartily for having killed the grass.

Ever since, Strouse has been attempting to create a kind of faggy, Christian mysticism through his practice as a poet. He believes that grace isn’t possible without first going through hell, so his books celebrate the campy, the disgusting, and the dimwitted—his modes of apophatic spirituality.

Strouse teaches medieval poetry at the City University of New York and at the New School. He is the author of My Gay Middle Ages (punctum books, 2015), Thebes (Jerk Poet, 2015), and Retractions and Revelations (Jerk Poet, 2014). He is currently writing his doctoral dissertation at CUNY on literary theories of the foreskin.

Academic CV