Pratt Library Displays “If Mamie Till Was The Mother of God”

As part of their National Poetry Month Celebration, the Enoch Pratt Free Library in Baltimore, Maryland is displaying my poem “If Mamie Till Was The Mother of God” in one of their large windows facing Cathedral Street. I’m humbled that they selected this poem to win their poetry contest, run in conjunction with the literaryContinue reading “Pratt Library Displays “If Mamie Till Was The Mother of God””

Piotr Gwiazda’s “Messages”

Piotr Gwiazda’s new book of poem Messages is a beautiful book that certainly has something to say. Pond Road Press has come up with a unique and interesting kind of publication. Messages is essentially a chapbook of poems, 45 pages, followed by 13 pages of an interview with the poet. This format allows the reader a samplingContinue reading “Piotr Gwiazda’s “Messages””

Poetry & Graffiti on the Red Line

Knowledge Commons, DC is “a free school for thinkers, doers, and tinkerers…” It’s a creative and innovative organization run by the magnificent and energetic Lucy Burnett. Knowledge Common’s core belief is that everyone should be able to take classes and everyone should teach classes. I’ve participated twice now in their programs and have loved theContinue reading “Poetry & Graffiti on the Red Line”

“Poetry Out Loud” at Banneker

I became a convert. A couple of weeks ago, I served as a judge for the Poetry Out Loud competition at Washington, D.C.’s Banneker Senior High School and I became a convert. I used to think that poetry recitation contests were a little dry and that I’d rather use my energies to help students writeContinue reading ““Poetry Out Loud” at Banneker”

Yusef Komunyakaa’s Voice

I heard Yusef Komunyakaa read on Thursday night of this past week, at the Phillips Collection in Washington, D.C. The reading was part of the Folger Shakespeare Library’s O.B. Hardison Poetry series. It was a thoughtful, rich reading. I have read Komunyakaa’s poetry for years but had never heard him read. It’s always interesting toContinue reading “Yusef Komunyakaa’s Voice”

Split This Rock Poetry Festival 2012

Once again, the poets are coming to Washington, D.C. From March 22-25, 2012, Split This Rock Poetry Festival takes place here in Washington, D.C. This will be the third Split This Rock Poetry Festival, previous Festivals took place in 2008 and 2010. I have participated in all three of these Festivals and they are magnificentContinue reading “Split This Rock Poetry Festival 2012”

Chinua Achebe’s “Chike and the River”

Chinua Achebe is one of the world’s literary treasures. His novels and short stories have moved and taught us for decades. Recently, I revisited one of his stories, that I read many years ago in high school. It moved me again, though in more nuanced ways. Chike and the River is one of those rare,Continue reading “Chinua Achebe’s “Chike and the River””

Melanie Henderson’s ELEGIES for NEW YORK AVENUE

Melanie Henderson’s new book, Elegies for New York Avenue turns remembering into a fine art. Winner of the 2011 Main Street Rag Poetry Book Award, the poems in this book are moving, generous tributes to the human skill of remembering. New York Avenue, like many places in Washington, D.C. is at once changing, and at theContinue reading “Melanie Henderson’s ELEGIES for NEW YORK AVENUE”