First Kiss by Tim Seibles

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“My mouth / had been a helmet forever / greased with secrets…” Tim Seibles narrates his poem “First Kiss” from his collection Buffalo Head Solos (Cleveland State University Poetry Center, 2004) for this TED-Ed animated short film directed by Hannah Jacobs, part of the “There’s a Poem for That” series.

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Embarkation

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“Butter lamp, incense stick, bees wax / votive, the occasion of poem, rites I enact…” In this video poem, Shin Yu Pai reimagines the traditional Wang Yeh Boat Burning Festival, a Taoist ritual, in the context of personal grief. Created in collaboration with filmmaker Scott Keva James, the short film was commissioned for the Ampersand Live showcase in Seattle. Pai is the final judge for Slippery Elm’s Deanna Tulley Multimedia Prize, which is open for submissions until September 30.

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On Being a Black Male Writer in America

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This behind-the-scenes short film directed by Yvonne Shirley of a 2018 T Magazine photo shoot at the Brooklyn Historical Society features Black American male poets, playwrights, and novelists—such as James Hannaham, Yusef Komunyakaa, and Ishmael Reed—speaking on identity in the publishing world and paying tribute to their favorite Black female writers.

Why Should You Read Moby-Dick?

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“It’s a multilayered exploration of not only the intimate details of life aboard a whaling ship, but also subjects from across human and natural history, by turns playful and tragic, humorous and urgent.” In this TED-Ed animated lesson by Sascha Morrell and directed by Martina Meštrović, the unique narration and imagery of Herman Melville’s classic novel is explored and celebrated.

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Poets in Space: Jericho Brown

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“We thought / Fingers in dirt meant it was our dirt, learning / Names in heat, in elements classical / Philosophers said could change us.” In this Paris Review video, Jericho Brown reads two poems from his most recent collection, The Tradition (Copper Canyon Press, 2019), for which he received the 2020 Pulitzer Prize in Poetry. Filmed in 2019 in the woods of Decatur, Georgia, “Poets in Space” was directed and produced by Daniel Grossman and Sean Webley in collaboration with the poet Malachi Black.

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City Moon by Francisco Aragón

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“Perfect disc of moon, huge / and simmering / low on the capital’s filthy horizon…” This installment from the Unamuno Poem Project video series features Francisco Aragón’s poem “City Moon,” recited in English by Joseph Fasano and in Spanish by Jorge García. Aragón’s new collection, After Rubén (Red Hen Press, 2020), is featured in Page One in the May/June issue of Poets & Writers Magazine.

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