This is an excerpt from a long interview I've done with Wordgathering, a fantastic online journal focusing on disability and literature. (I hope I haven't babbled too much!)
Wordgathering: Raymond, you are such a Renaissance person – a poet, playwright, translator, film maker, novelist and essayist – that it is hard to know exactly just where to begin, but one thing that I find particularly interesting is your work in translating the work of Clayton Valli [an ASL poet] and making it accessible to the non-ASL public. Can you talk a little bit about what that experience was like?
RL [Raymond Luczak]: When I first saw Clayton, I was an 18-year-old student in the New Signers Program (NSP) which I took for three weeks at Gallaudet University prior to becoming a freshman there. By this point I had been writing uninformed (and uniformly) bad poetry for seven years. I had never questioned the unspoken assumption that poetry was the domain of hearing people until our ASL teacher informed us that an ASL poet was coming to our class that afternoon. "ASL poet"? I knew ASL, and I knew poetry (or so I'd thought at the time), but together? How would that work?
Wanna read more? The rest of this interview is at this link.
They also have a very thoughtful review of my memoir Assembly Required: Notes from a Deaf Gay Life at this link.
Please check it out, and let me know what you think! Have a great week, all!