BY JOANNA C. VALENTE
Peter Milne Greiner is unlike any writer you've read before. With his first book, Lost City Hydrothermal Field (The Operating System, 2017), you're in for a real treat. The book is perfect for anyone who feels like they were born on the rings of Saturn and somehow found themselves on earth, lost, wandering around trying to find themselves, trying to discover something. Grenier does an amazing job at weaving together a sci-fi, queer world exploring identity, landscape, loneliness, and apocalypse.
As Albert Mobilio said of the book, Peter's poems "range widely across space, time, and cultural history—from the Magna Carta to The Little Mermaid, from the pyramids to the astronomical observatory at Mauna Kea—and catch up in their full-throttle trajectory a universe of detail about the nature of things ... By deploying a language alert to figurative provocation that's sharpened by a tautly disjunctive syntax, Greiner uncovers the apocalypse in the quotidian and raises everyday life to fearsome implication."
I was lucky to be able to speak with Peter about gifs, food, books, and more below:
A failed experiment, as when I tried to prepare breadfruit the way Herman Melville describes it in Typee. And if not something like that, something with secret ingredients. I love secret ingredients.
FAVORITE MUSIC WHILE WRITING
If music is on, it’s music without words. Some recent records include Eric Holm’s Andøya, Peru’s Macchu Picchu, various things by Rainforest Spiritual Enslavement, and Brooklyn’s own Long Distance Poison. Long things to get lost in. But I mostly don’t write when there’s music on because I mostly write when I’m not at home.
FAVORITE THREE BOOKS
To stay true to always I have to go pretty far back. So I’ll say Dinotopia by James Gurney, Island of the Blue Dolphins by Scott O’Dell, and Rapter Red by Robert Bakker. All three are about castaways.
Any land card from the Ice Age expansion of Magic: The Gathering
GIF YOU IDENTIFY WITH
FEELINGS ON APOCALYPSE AND DEATH
I sometimes wonder is there is a type of apocalypse that could happen that no one would notice. Definitely noticeable apocalypses include asteroid disaster, global extinction event, widespread nuclear fallout. Those all enjoy plausibility (and banality). I’m trying to imagine none of the above without making predictions. Also I think apocalypses can be deathless. I think the world as it is known could end but we could all going on living.
FAVORITE THREE FILMS
Jurassic Park, State & Main, Alien
ON HIS SOCIAL MEDIA PERSONA
Because I don’t use social media very actively, no persona that I know of has yet to emerge. I def use Insta more than anything else, but I don’t think my usage of it betrays a particular or distinctive role, either. If anything I prefer Insta because it feels, perhaps erroneously, less public.
WHAT HE CARRIES
Peter Milne Greiner's work has been featured in Motherboard, Dark Mountain, Fence, SciArt Magazine, and elsewhere, and has been lauded by the likes of Jeff VanderMeer and Claire L. Evans. He studied poetry at The New School under Sekou Sundiata, and is a scholar of the history of the Roaring Forties. In July of 2013 he sent a poem into space through the Jamesburg Earth Station in Carmel Valley, California. He is the author of the chapbook Executive Producer Chris Carter. LOST CITY HYDROTHERMAL Field is his first full length collection.
Joanna C. Valente is a human who lives in Brooklyn, New York. They are the author of Sirs & Madams (Aldrich Press, 2014), The Gods Are Dead (Deadly Chaps Press, 2015), Marys of the Sea (Operating System, 2017), Sexting the Dead (Unknown Press, 2018), Xenos (Agape Editions, 2016), and is the editor of A Shadow Map: Writing by Survivors of Sexual Assault (CCM, 2017). They received their MFA in writing at Sarah Lawrence College. Joanna is the founder of Yes, Poetry and the managing editor for Civil Coping Mechanisms and Luna Luna Magazine. Some of their writing has appeared, or is forthcoming, in Brooklyn Magazine, Prelude, BUST, Spork Press, and elsewhere. Joanna also leads workshops at Brooklyn Poets. joannavalente.com / Twitter: @joannasaid / IG: joannacvalente