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by Rochelle Spencer
Twenty-five years after poets Thomas Sayers Ellis and Sharan Strange founded the Dark Room Collective as a community for established and emerging African American writers, members have gathered for a reunion tour that celebrates the DRC’s rich history and far-reaching influence in the literary world.
The Dark Room Collective, a community of black writers founded twenty-five years ago in Boston by poets Thomas Sayers Ellis and Sharan Strange and musician Janice Lowe, regroups this year for the Nothing Personal reunion tour. This slideshow offers a look at the early days of the DRC as well as a glimpse of the poets today.
by Mary Gannon
Moving into new poetic territory, Major Jackson, in his third collection, Holding Company, corrals the ecstatic in a ten-line form.
by Carleen Brice
Author Carleen Brice recommends titles in honor of National Buy a Book by a Black Author and Give It to Somebody Not Black Month, the book-buying campaign she launched last year to heighten awareness of black authors who aren't as famous as Toni Morrison, Alice Walker, and Colson Whitehead.
by Therese Eiben
Ethiopian exile Nega Mezlekia's memoir, Notes From the Hyena's Belly, details his remarkable boyhood in Jijiga, a city in the eastern part of the Horn of Africa built on a "dry, sandless desert where even the smallest wind creates devils—whirlwinds of dust that rise high into the heavens and are visible from miles away."
by Natasha Trethewey
Elizabeth Alexander's new collection, Antebellum Dream Book, deals with the image of the body, a theme she visits often in her previous works. "If you let a body speak," she says, "it gives you access to all sorts of concrete sensations that are vital, the stuff of poetry, the way a poem convinces." In this interview with Natasha Trethewey, Alexander speaks to her use of race, urban life, history, and of course, the body.
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