Enjoy an afternoon of phenomenal poetry and stimulating conversation! Award-winning poets Tyehimba Jess, Shara McCallum, and Morgan Parker give brief readings of their original work, followed by a discussion on a range of topics, from race and poetic forms, to the poet’s evolving role and responsibility in and to a literary landscape at once predominantly white and rapidly diversifying. Cave Canem fellow Clint Smith moderates.
Open to AWP pass-holders. For more information on how to register, visit awpwriter.org.
Tyehimba Jess's most recent book, Olio (Wave Books, 2016), won the 2017 Pulitzer Prize for Poetry, the Anisfield-Wolf Book Award, The Midland Society Author’s Award in Poetry, and received an Outstanding Contribution to Publishing Citation from the Black Caucus of the American Library Association. His first collection, Leadbelly (Wave Books, 2005), won the 2004 National Poetry Series, and was named one of the “Best Poetry Book of 2005” by the Library Journal and Black Issues Book Review. A Cave Canem alumni, Jess’s fellowships and additional awards include a 2016 Lannan Literary Award in Poetry, a 2004 Literature Fellowship from the National Endowment for the Arts, and a 2006 Whiting Fellowship. Jess is a Professor of English at the College of Staten Island.
Shara McCallum is a Jamaican-American writer and the author of five books of poetry, published in the US and UK, most recently Madwoman (2017). Her work has been widely published in the US, the Caribbean, and Europe, has been translated into several languages, and has received such recognition as a Witter Bynner Fellowship from the Library of Congress and an NEA Poetry Fellowship. She lives in Pennsylvania and teaches creative writing & literature at Penn State University.
Morgan Parker is the author of two books, There Are More Beautiful Things than Beyoncé (Tin House Books 2017) and Other People’s Comfort Keeps Me Up At Night (Switchback Books 2015), and two forthcoming publications, Magical Negro (Tin House, 2019) a poetry collection, and a debut book of nonfiction to be published later that year by One World. A recipient of a 2017 National Endowment for the Arts Literature Fellowship, winner of a 2016 Pushcart Prize, and a Cave Canem graduate fellow, Parker received her Bachelors from Columbia University, and an MFA in Poetry from NYU. She lives in Los Angeles.
Clint Smith is a writer, teacher, and Ph.D. Candidate at Harvard University. He is a 2014 National Poetry Slam champion, a 2017 recipient of the Jerome J. Shestack Prize from the American Poetry Review, and has received fellowships from Cave Canem and the National Science Foundation. His writing has appeared in The New Yorker, The Atlantic, The Paris Review, The New Republic and he has delivered two popular TED Talks, The Danger of Silence & How to Raise a Black Son in America. His debut collection of poems, Counting Descent, was published in 2016 by Write Bloody Publishing. It won the 2017 Literary Award for Best Poetry Book from the Black Caucus of the American Library Association and was a finalist for an NAACP Image Award.