Ugly Duckling Presse

Death Centos
Death Centos

Diana Arterian

illustrated by Natalia Porter

Poetry | $12 $10
Out of Print
"This is the undying frictioned beauty of Zombie poetics." — Vanessa Place

Arterian employs the ancient framework of the cento—a collage form that borrows the language of other authors—to mine the last words of a hundred people, mixing historical figures and death-row inmates through a weaving of their immortal utterances. 

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Excerpt ˇ


What's that? Do I
look strange?

Come, come, no weakness;
let's be a man to the last.

I must go in, the fog
is rising.

[Lord Byron, Emily Dickinson, Robert Louis Stevenson]

Close ˆ

About the Author

Diana Arterian
Photo credit: Ali-Reza Nusrat

Diana Arterian was born and raised in Arizona. She currently resides in Los Angeles where she is pursuing her PhD in Literature and Creative Writing at the University of Southern California. She holds an MFA in poetry from CalArts, where she was a Beutner Fellow. Diana is the Managing Editor of Ricochet, a publisher of poetry and prose chapbooks. Her poetry has appeared in H_NGM_N, trnsfrTwo Serious Ladies and The Volta, among others. 

Other Contributors

Natalia Porter
Photo credit: Adrian Sanchez

Natalia Porter is a Mexican designer and visual artist. Her work includes sculptural and functional objects as well as installations, all evolving from a combination of technological processes with traditional techniques and craft. Natalia’s work has been exhibited worldwide, including: MoMA Design Stores, Queens Museum of Art, Elizabeth Foundation for The Arts, Latin American Design Foundation. Her work has been published by The New York TimesJapan Architect, and Princeton Architectural Press.

Advance Praise

Fusing strains of investigative, documentary, and conceptual poetics, Diana Arterian’s Death Centos is the penultimate panegyric. Here, Joe Hill and John Brown meet Emily Dickinson in that moment before the lights go out. It is a brave and ingenious collection that deserves to be widely read.—Mark Novak
Death Centos, is like all crossings, a chiasmus—put another way, there is no crossing that is not crossed out, no last words not picked up and put out. Reiteration, Arterian reminds us, is relentless réanimation. This is the undying frictioned beauty of Zombie poetics.—Vanessa Place