Scattered Arils

Scattered Arils is Dena Rod's debut poetry collection, now out from Milk & Cake Press. The poems in this collection excavates familial memory and ancestral inheritance, transmuting the narrator's identity into a queer future.

  1. Literary Arts
  • "Dena Rod must have eyes in every place. And no vantage point is spared in this masterpiece of ode and indictment. So many souls can take their rest here in these poems. So many galaxies as well. Understand what we are witnessing: for our bones, the invention of a new naturalism." - Tongo Eisen-Martin, 8th Poet Laureate of San Francisco, Winner of the CA Book Award "I don’t typically compare artists, but this debut collection of poetry from Dena Rod gave me the same gentle splanchnic tug that I felt when reading Prelude to Bruise by Saeed Jones. Dena Rod writes their mother as the flesh that holds the celestial, reminds us that calloused fathers have favorite colors, and that intersectionality is best defined as a collision of shapes. Scattered Arils shows readers how places are vessels for memories as are our bodies—and reminds us that with the full control of our bodies we have the power to decide where our narrative begins for the sake of our own self-discovery. And even though we may be our parents’ dreams manifested, we are still so much more than they could ever imagine. This debut collection by Dena Rod is raw, lived experience captured by the finest of inks." -author of Southern Migrant Mixtape and winner of winner of The PEN Oakland/Josephine Miles Literary Award "Dena Rod's debut collection, Scattered Arils, is a tribute to what roots us and what eludes us. Their attention to earthly feeling--the ways we belong to people and countries, to families and the earth, and all the ways we must remake ourselves when the ties are severed--are beautifully evoked. The arils of which they write--small seeds of the glorious and complex pomegranate--are the essence of what's still possible when we feel lost, displaced, misunderstood. Rod's language and the feelings in them are so familiar to so many of us." –Persis Karim, Director of The Center for Iranian Diaspora Studies, Professor, and Poet