Kim Parko

Kim Parko is the author of Cure All (Caketrain Press, 2010) and the novel The Grotesque Child, co-winner of the 2015 Tarpaulin Sky Book Awards. She lives with her husband, daughter, and the seen and unseen, in Santa Fe, New Mexico where she is an associate professor at the Institute of American Indian Arts.

Kim Parko

Kim Parko is the author of Cure All (Caketrain Press, 2010) and the novel The Grotesque Child, co-winner of the 2015 Tarpaulin Sky Book Awards. She lives with her husband, daughter, and the seen and unseen, in Santa Fe, New Mexico where she is an associate professor at the Institute of American Indian Arts.

The Grotesque Child
by Kim Parko

Co-winner of the 2015 Tarpaulin Sky Book Awards
Novel. 250 pages. Paperback. 2016.

The Grotesque Child is a story about being and being and being something else. It is about swallowing and regurgitating, conceiving and birthing. It is about orifices and orbs. It is about the viscous, weepy, goopy, mucousy, bloody state of feminine being and trans-being. It is about pain and various healers and torturers, soothers and inflictors. It is about what sleeps and hides in all the nooks and crannies of perceived existence and existence unperceived.

The Grotesque Child
by Kim Parko

Co-winner of the 2015 Tarpaulin Sky Book Awards
Novel. 250 pages. Paperback. 2016.

The Grotesque Child is a story about being and being and being something else. It is about swallowing and regurgitating, conceiving and birthing. It is about orifices and orbs. It is about the viscous, weepy, goopy, mucousy, bloody state of feminine being and trans-being. It is about pain and various healers and torturers, soothers and inflictors. It is about what sleeps and hides in all the nooks and crannies of perceived existence and existence unperceived.

from The Grotesque Child

The mother ship could not bring a child to term. She searched the worlds for someone to help her with her problem. In one of the worlds, she found the midwife, Brigit, who was purported to make the most barren wombs fertile. Brigit moved onto the mother ship and stayed in a room on the edge of the mother ship’s goop chamber. The goop chamber was where the mother ship’s children should have spawned. Brigit threw herbs into the goop. She squirted tinctures into the goop. She chanted over the goop with burning incense. She advised the mother ship about exercises, diet and stress reduction, and the mother ship followed her advice diligently. The mother ship had also prayed, nightly, to no-one-in-particular. But all the mother ship’s children came out too early, too small, and barely formed. She had watched them all eject through her birthing hole and float away from her as bloody clumps without the fins to swim.

What kind of mother ship am I? cried the mother ship to Brigit. One that cannot bear children? Who has ever heard of such a travesty?

Brigit tried to comfort the mother ship, but Brigit knew that what the mother ship really needed was new seeds.

Brigit had given her own seeds away long ago.

One night the mother ship asked no-one-in-particular, Can you tell me whether or not I should have children? And if not, could you rename me as something other than the mother ship, and if I should have children, can you help me know what I should do to bear them? And the mother ship tried to interpret no-one-in-particular’s silence.

The mother ship then asked the same question to Brigit, who then took out the colorful array of cards that she always carried with her. Brigit spread the cards on a table and carefully discerned their message.

It’s clear, the midwife said to the mother ship, the cards say that you must find the grotesque child….

from The Grotesque Child

The mother ship could not bring a child to term. She searched the worlds for someone to help her with her problem. In one of the worlds, she found the midwife, Brigit, who was purported to make the most barren wombs fertile. Brigit moved onto the mother ship and stayed in a room on the edge of the mother ship’s goop chamber. The goop chamber was where the mother ship’s children should have spawned. Brigit threw herbs into the goop. She squirted tinctures into the goop. She chanted over the goop with burning incense. She advised the mother ship about exercises, diet and stress reduction, and the mother ship followed her advice diligently. The mother ship had also prayed, nightly, to no-one-in-particular. But all the mother ship’s children came out too early, too small, and barely formed. She had watched them all eject through her birthing hole and float away from her as bloody clumps without the fins to swim.

What kind of mother ship am I? cried the mother ship to Brigit. One that cannot bear children? Who has ever heard of such a travesty?

Brigit tried to comfort the mother ship, but Brigit knew that what the mother ship really needed was new seeds.

Brigit had given her own seeds away long ago.

One night the mother ship asked no-one-in-particular, Can you tell me whether or not I should have children? And if not, could you rename me as something other than the mother ship, and if I should have children, can you help me know what I should do to bear them? And the mother ship tried to interpret no-one-in-particular’s silence.

The mother ship then asked the same question to Brigit, who then took out the colorful array of cards that she always carried with her. Brigit spread the cards on a table and carefully discerned their message.

It’s clear, the midwife said to the mother ship, the cards say that you must find the grotesque child….

Kim Parko in the Media

Kim Parko’s Grotesque Child (TS 2016) Reviewed at Maudlin House

Thanks to Maudlin House and Rachel Charlene Lewis, you can read a fab little review of Kim Parko's novel The Grotesque Child (TS 2016). "what it is to be a small, vulnerable thing, to feel consistently powerless and yet undeniably curious; it is the us before our fears have names, and before we know we are not alone in our terror."

2015 Tarpaulin Sky Book Prize Winners & Finalists

We said that we'd pick two, but went ahead and picked four instead. Also: calling up first-time authors at home? There is just no better part of this job. Meet the winners and read excerpts: Steven Dunn’s novel Potted Meat, Dana Green’s fiction collection Sometimes the Air in the Room Goes Missing, Amy King’s poetry collection The Missing Museum, and Kim Parko’s novel The Grotesque Child.

Kim Parko, The Grotesque Child

Co-winner of the 2015 Tarpaulin Sky Book Prize, Kim Parko's novel, The Grotesque Child, explores compassion, hate, origins, beasts and babes. "I am going to ask the brightness to dim down a bit, said the animal to the grotesque child. Be careful, said the grotesque child, the brightness can be tricky."

Kim Parko in the Media

Kim Parko’s Grotesque Child (TS 2016) Reviewed at Maudlin House

Thanks to Maudlin House and Rachel Charlene Lewis, you can read a fab little review of Kim Parko's novel The Grotesque Child (TS 2016). "what it is to be a small, vulnerable thing, to feel consistently powerless and yet undeniably curious; it is the us before our fears have names, and before we know we are not alone in our terror."

2015 Tarpaulin Sky Book Prize Winners & Finalists

We said that we'd pick two, but went ahead and picked four instead. Also: calling up first-time authors at home? There is just no better part of this job. Meet the winners and read excerpts: Steven Dunn’s novel Potted Meat, Dana Green’s fiction collection Sometimes the Air in the Room Goes Missing, Amy King’s poetry collection The Missing Museum, and Kim Parko’s novel The Grotesque Child.

Kim Parko, The Grotesque Child

Co-winner of the 2015 Tarpaulin Sky Book Prize, Kim Parko's novel, The Grotesque Child, explores compassion, hate, origins, beasts and babes. "I am going to ask the brightness to dim down a bit, said the animal to the grotesque child. Be careful, said the grotesque child, the brightness can be tricky."