Story Problems


Written in the form of a reading comprehension exam, the poems in "Story Problems" examine spirituality, religion, science, whiteness, gender, mortality, and childhood, each ending with four questions posed to the reader. "Story Problems" was the winner of the 2017 Palooka Press Chapbook Contest.


Charles Jensen earned an MFA in creative writing from Arizona State University in 2004. He is the author of five chapbooks of poems, most recently "Breakup/Breakdown," and "The First Risk," which was a finalist for the 2010 Lambda Literary Award. A new collection of prose poems, "Nanopedia," is forthcoming in 2018.

Praise for this book

The poetry [in this book] arises partly from the leaps between the brief story and the questions. How does the reader comprehend the links between story and questions except to participate in a poetry experience, that is, where narratives need not be transparent, linear or even make sense? This, in fact, is one of the successes of "Story Problems": how it creates an unconventional space for reader-response … I do believe Charles Jensen is one of the most deft authors today utilizing the chapbook format.

Eileen Tabios, author "Galatea Resurrects"
Story Problems: Poems, by ASU alum Charles Jensen
Date published
Palooka Press

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