In his early poetry, Langston Hughes told the stories and experiences of Black people for both adults and children.
Poets and Poems: Shane McCrae and “Sometimes I Never Suffered”
In “Sometimes I Never Suffered,” poet Shane McCrae uses the historical figure of a mixed-race boy to tell a larger story.
Poets and Poems: Yrsa Daley-Ward and ‘bone’
The poems of “bone” by Yrsa Daley-Ward create discomfort, jolting the reader into an awareness of a very different and personal experience.
Poets and Poems: Claude McKay and ‘Harlem Shadows’
Almost a century later, the poems of “Harlem Shadows” by Claude McKay remain a statement for recognition, courage, and determination.
Poets and Poems: Carl Phillips and “Pale Colors in a Tall Field”
“Pale Colors in a Tall Field” by Carl Phillips invites you into a dream, asking unexpected if important questions.
Forgotten Classics: “Cane” by Jean Toomer
“Cane” by Jean Toomer is considered a modernist classic, compared favorably and critically to the works of William Faulkner.
Poet-a-Day: Meet Ashley M. Jones
What can the villanelle offer a poet? Ashley M. Jones has a suggestion—and a container for obsession or sorrow.
Reading Generously: Black Stories
For February’s Reading Generously column, we share stories by Black authors. Fiction, poetry, and plays, oh my!
By Heart: ‘blessing the boats’ + New Elizabeth Bishop Challenge
For Black History Month, we learn Lucille Clifton’s “blessing the boats” By Heart and consider the memory of a Chilean sea.
Reading Generously: ‘How We Fight for Our Lives’ by Saeed Jones
This month our book review column becomes Reading Generously. We begin with Saeed Jones’ open-handed memoir.
Take Your Poet to Work Day: Countee Cullen
We continue our 2020 Take Your Poet to Work celebration with fabulous poet Countee Cullen.
Take Your Poet to Work: Lucille Clifton
We kick off the 2020 Take Your Poet to Work celebration with beloved poet Lucille Clifton.
Poets and Poems: Major Jackson and “Holding Company”
The 2010 collection “Holding Company” by Major Jackson leads the eye and mind to a different understanding and a different context.
Poems to Listen By: Under the Canopy 09—Eternity [Bonus Episode]
In a bonus Under the Canopy episode, Laurie Klein shares “Eternity” from Tracy K. Smith, reminding us to consider, where would we be without trees?
Creating an ‘I Love Poetry Moment’: Magic City’s Ashley M. Jones
For National Poetry Month, create an ‘I Love Poetry Moment,’ following the example of Ashley M. Jones and the Magic City Poetry Festival.
Poems to Listen By: Sharing the Canopy 02—Motherhood
In the latest Poems to Listen By: Under the Canopy podcast, Laurie Klein shares “Motherhood” from Diane Loretta Walker and considers the stories trees hold inside.
Poets and Poems: Edward Holmes and “Bravery & Brevity”
“Bravery & Brevity,” the new poetry collection by Edward Holmes, is written from a place of transformation, moving from pain to hope.
Afternoon Tea (and Poetry) with Tracy K. Smith’s podcast “The Slowdown”
When author Megan Willome needs an afternoon pick-me-up, she cues up ‘The Slowdown’ with U.S. Poet Laureate Tracy K. Smith.
Poets and Poems: Aisha Sharif and “To Keep from Undressing”
The poems of “To Keep from Undressing” by Aisha Sharif tell the powerful story of a black woman and her Muslim faith in America.
National Book Award for Poetry: “Indecency” by Justin Phillip Reed
The poems of the 2018 National Book Award for Poetry Winner “Indecency” by Justin Phillip Reed are as haunting as the streets they come from.