Camp Marmalade

Part two of an autobiographical trance trilogy: intimate experiments in queer documentary and improvisatory poetics



Did you know members can access discounts of up to 20%? Join Today!


Additional information

Weight 1 lbs
Dimensions 5 × 1 × 7.8 in

Camp Marmalade takes the freedoms of trance utterance—unfettered verbal association, explicit auto-ethnography, erotic bricolage—and applies a more stringent sense of time-as-emergency to this liberation-oriented poetic method. Part diary, part collage, part textbook for a new School of Impulse, Camp Marmalade assembles a perverse and giddy cultural archive, a Ferris wheel of aphorisms, depicting a queer body amidst a dizzying flow of sensations, dreams, and sex-and-death distillations—whether sugary, fruity, bitter, expired, or freshly jarred.


Near Camp Cataract, down the way from Port Salut, whether cheese or navvy zone, Wayne Koestenbaum’s Camp Marmalade sits, lemony, curiously positioned, between epic alps and salty, notebook sound, i.e., tidbit commedia. Open to all comers, the camp is helmed by counselors (Duncan Smith, Friederike Mayröcker, and Lionel Hampton among them) who lead adventurers in a smorgasbord of activities, from “incest stardom fantasy” to “semantic depilation,” from “dung oeuvre[s]” to directing “sunlight on slut emporia.” After lewd s’mores, instead of “Taps” the assembled sing “La Juive ‘Boléro’” and call it a night—it’s that kind of place. The “sieve of I am” has never produced a tenderer flower.

Show More +Show Less -
ISBN: 9781937658779
paperback, 432 pages, 5 x 7.5 in
Publication Date: 2018

Prolific cross-genre author Koestenbaum attempts to “assemble an/ entire life from found/ scraps” in this sequel to 2015’s The Pink Trance Notebooks. The stream-of-consciousness form, composed of many very short poems, continues here, congealing into a lengthy work of obsessions and candid ponderings. These fragments and assorted bits of condensed verse reveal a mind wandering from snapshots in a family scrapbook to Sharpie markings at a local glory hole to classical composers.

Show More +Show Less -

Wayne Koestenbaum—poet, critic, novelist, artist, performer—is the author of 22 books, including Ultramarine, The Cheerful Scapegoat, Figure It Out, Camp Marmalade, My 1980s & Other Essays, The Anatomy …

More about Wayne Koestenbaum