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Sat, Jun 04


on Zoom

Black Fire -- This Time's Literary Candle Has Been Lit

Black Fire--This Time's literary candle has been Lit! celebrating twenty-first century Black self-determination.

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Black Fire -- This Time's Literary Candle Has Been Lit
Black Fire -- This Time's Literary Candle Has Been Lit

Time & Location

Jun 04, 2022, 4:00 PM PDT

on Zoom

About the Event

Black Fire--This Time's literary candle has been Lit! Ishmael Reed, Sonia Sanchez, and Aneb Kgositsile powerful voices in the Black Arts Movement are joined by dynamic voices of social change Michael Warr and Raymond Nat Turner and a new generation of writers like Connie Owens Patton examining twenty-first century Black self-determination.

Connie (Owens) Patton is a poet and spoken word artist. Her work has been published in Black Fire-This Time Volume I, African Voices, Writing for Our Lives, Lucky Jefferson’s Zine, Awake., Issue I and Covid, Isolation and Hope: Artists Respond to the Pandemic. In 2020, her poem “Lie to Me” was featured on Heard/Word Galleyway, an on-line audio. She is currently working on a book of poetry entitled Through a Tightly Coiled Lens.

Michael Warr’s literary honors include a 2021 San Francisco Arts Commission Artist Award and the 2020 Berkeley Poetry Festival Lifetime Achievement Award. He is the Poetry Editor of the anthology Of Poetry & Protest: From Emmett Till to Trayvon Martin (W.W. Norton). His books of poetry include The Armageddon of Funk (“A poetic soundtrack to black life” according to the Black Caucus of the American Library Association), Power Lines: A Decade of Poetry From Chicago’s Guild Complex, as co-editor with Julie Parson Nesbitt and Luis Rodriguez, and We Are All The Black Boy all published by Tia Chucha Press. He co-edited the bilingual chapbook Catching Memory with poet/translator Chun Yu. Catching Memory features poems and short stories in English and Chinese that evolved out of Warr and Yu’s “Two Languages / One Community” workshop series. He is a 2017 San Francisco Library Laureate. Other honors include a Creative Work Fund award for his multimedia project “Tracing Poetic Memory in Bayview Hunters Point,” PEN Oakland Josephine Miles Award for Excellence in Literature, Black Caucus of the American Library Association Award, Gwendolyn Brooks Significant Illinois Poets Award, National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship, a Ragdale Foundation US – Africa Fellowship, and other honors. His poetry in collaboration with musicians, visual and performing artists, has been dramatized on stage, depicted on canvas, and set to original music. Michael is the former Deputy Director of the Museum of the African Diaspora and a board member of the Friends of the San Francisco Public Library.

Gloria House, Ph.D. (African pen name Aneb Kgositsile) is Professor Emerita of Humanities and African American Studies at the University of Michigan, Dearborn, and Associate Professor Emerita in the Interdisciplinary Studies Department of Wayne State University. Since the 1960’s, when she worked with the Student Non-Violent Coordinating Committee in Lowndes County, AL, Dr. House has been an activist in African American human rights struggles and international solidarity causes. Her publications include four poetry collections, Blood River (Broadside Press, 1983), Rainrituals (Broadside Press, 1989), and Shrines (Third World Press, 2004), Medicine ( Broadside Lotus Press and University of Detroit Mercy Press, 2017), and a book of commentary on the political uses of environment in the United States, Tower and Dungeon: A Study of Place and Power in American Culture. She is also lead editor of the anthology, A Different Image: The Legacy of Broadside Press, selected as a Notable Book of Michigan for 2005 by the Library of Michigan. Her essay, “We’ll Never Turn Back,” is included in Hands on the Freedom Plow: Personal Accounts of Women in SNCC, University of Illinois Press, 2010. She serves as editor of the Naomi Long Madgett Poetry Award Series. She was named the Kresge Foundation Eminent Artist in 2019.

“The Town Crier,” Raymond Nat Turner, is a NYC poet privileged to have read at the Harriet Tubman Centennial Symposium. He is Artistic Director of the stalwart JazzPoetry Ensemble UpSurge!NYC and has appeared at numerous festivals and venues including the Monterey Jazz Festival and Panafest in Ghana West Africa. Turner also co-executive produced two popularly and critically acclaimed recordings, "All Hands On Deck" and "Chromatology." He is currently Poet-in-Residence at Black Agenda Report and former Co-Chair of the New York Chapter of the National Writers Union (NWU). Turner has opened for such people as James Baldwin, People’s Advocate Cynthia McKinney, sportswriter Dave Zirin and CA Congresswoman Barbara Lee following her lone vote against attacking Afghanistan.

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