Sideshow Concessions is the first book from queer performer and scholar Lucas Crawford. A collection populated by the circus-like bodies and experiences of a narrator navigating rural pasts and urban presents, Sideshow Concessions is the unofficial story of someone who is both a bearded lady and the fattest man in the world.
Lucas Crawford is the Ruth Wynn Woodward Endowment Lecturer at Simon Fraser University, where he teaches in the Department of Gender, Sexuality, and Women’s Studies. His poetry has appeared in Room, Rampike, PRISM International, The Antigonish Review, SubTerrain online, Other Voices, and The Nashwaak Review, as well as the anthology Between: New Gay Poetry. Crawford’s poems won the the Writers’ Federation of Nova Scotia’s Atlantic Writing Competition and are currently nominated for the Pushcart Prize. He’s based in Vancouver.
“Sideshow Confessions is an accessible glimpse at the absurd — a clever look at a trans narrative which explores its challenges without drowning in them. For this reason, I can happily recommend it. Invisible Publishing has printed a snappy, good looking product, and Crawford’s sense of humour is a breath of fresh air.”—Broken Pencil
“Like its speaker, Sideshow Concessions defies easy characterization—slim enough to carry in your back pocket (I carried mine for weeks), yet with heft enough to warrant multiple readings. These poems are fat, juicy bites of life, rich with experience—not always tender, but never tough.”—Plenitude Magazine
“Something about this poetry collection made me feel really seen. It made me feel like an insider, with the experiences about growing up in rural Canadian towns, the references to Nova Scotian musicians, the Can Lit jokes… When many of these cultural references are straight and cis-washed, it’s so refreshing to have a queer and trans poet like Lucas Crawford writing about them. These references are ours too, Crawford insists.”—Casey the Canadian Lesbrarian
“Lucas Crawford’s first book of poetry, Sideshow Concessions, is a stunner.”—Michael Dennis
“Sideshow Concessions is fresh, honest, heartbreaking, and funny, with turns of phrase equally intelligent and moving.”—Karen Solie