Brandon Shimoda is the author of several books of poetry and prose, most recently The Grave on the Wall (City Lights, 2019), which received the PEN Open Book Award, and The Desert (The Song Cave, 2018). The sequel to The Desert, Hydra Medusa, is forthcoming from Nightboat Books. He is currently (always) writing (fending off) a book on the afterlife of Japanese American incarceration. Meanwhile, the poems that make “The Hour of the Rat” were written in the early hours of the early months of his daughter’s life, and are dedicated to her.
“and even you forgot those brilliant flashes seen from afar” -Ruth Stone