Explore the creative voices of African American writers in verse. From the 1919 Chicago Race Riots to the rural and Appalachian south to a sci-fi look at the future, the following collections of poems explore the diverse experiences of African Americans.
The first anthology of poems by and for the hip-hop generation. It includes more than four decades of poets and covers the birth to the now of hip-hop culture and music and style. The BreakBeat Poets is for people who love Hip-Hop, for fans of the culture, for people who’ve never read a poem, for people who thought poems were only something done by dead white dudes who got lost in a forest, and for poetry heads. This anthology is meant to expand the idea of who a poet is and what a poem is for.
Black Girl Magic continues and deepens the work of the first BreakBeat Poets anthology by focusing on some of the most exciting Black women writing today. This anthology breaks up the myth of hip-hop as a boys’ club, and asserts the truth that the cypher is a feminine form.
There Are More Beautiful Things Than Beyonce by Morgan Parker
Morgan Parker stands at the intersections of vulnerability and performance, of desire and disgust,of tragedy and excellence. Unrelentingly feminist,tender, ruthless, and sequined, these poems are an altarto the complexities of black American womanhood inan age of non-indictments and deja vu, and a time ofwars over bodies and power.
Citizen: an American Lyric by Claudia Rankine
Award-winning collection of essays, poetry, and images that expose the racial tensions in twenty-first century life, highlighting the slights, slips of the tongue, and intentional offensives that pervade the home, school, and popular media.
Wild Beauty by Ntozake Shange
In a collection of more than 60 original and selected poems in both English and Spanish, a poet, novelist and award-winning playwright, drawing from her experience as a feminist black woman in America, shares her utterly unique, unapologetic and deeply emotional writing that has made her one of the most iconic literary figures of our time.
1919 by Eve Ewing
The Chicago Race Riot of 1919, the most intense of the riots that comprised the “Red Summer” of violence across the nation’s cities, is an event that has shaped the last century but is widely unknown. In 1919, award-winning poet Eve L. Ewing explores the story of this event―which lasted eight days and resulted in thirty-eight deaths and almost 500 injuries―through poems recounting the stories of everyday people trying to survive and thrive in the city. Ewing uses speculative and Afrofuturist lenses to recast history, and illuminates the thin line between the past and the present.
Incendiary Art by Patricia Smith
A National Book Award finalist and the author of six critically acclaimed volumes of poetry presents a compelling new collection that envisions, re-envisions and ultimately reinvents the role of witness with an incendiary fusion of forms, including prose poems, ghazals, sestinas and sonnets.