“Alan King is one of my favorite up and coming poets of his generation” JOY HARJO; POINT BLANK is “tough-minded and celebratory” TIM SEIBLES; “Alan King’s narrative poems…telegraph…a lifetime in just a few lines” WASHINGTON CITY PAPER; “each poem [is] charged with an undeniable exuberance” BEST AMERICAN POETRY BLOG.




Check IndieBound to see which of your local stores has POINT BLANK. | In DC, POINT BLANK is available at Duende District, East City Books (Pennsylvania Avenue), Politics & Prose (Connecticut Avenue), The Potter’s House (Columbia Road) and Walls of Books DC (Georgia Avenue) | It’s also available online at Amazon.



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Sample Poems

Sugar Shack | Booth Seat | The Angel Speaks to the New York Times




See additional blurbs.



POINT BLANK  trailers:




Praise for POINT BLANK:

“The poems are real poetry and not current platitudes that are played off as poetry. There is art in King’s writing and unity in his voice.” -Joseph  on GoodReads (Read the full review.)

“As dire as his subject matter can be, King infuses his verse with sensuous descriptions of women and men and food and fond memories of his childhood. …His is a sumptuous sensibility that, paradoxically, can deliver a breakneck prosody when needed. His lines spin and sizzle, thicken and thin with raw energy, replete with the sensations of being human” -The Trampset (Read the full review.)

“…King invites his readers into his life in such a vulnerable and authentic way. …Food is probably my favorite of his imagery. I can almost smell…the coconut and okra. …It made it feel welcoming and homey, nostalgic for family.” -Katy Vendetti on GoodReads (Read the full review.)

“[In] Alan King’s second collection of poetry, Point Blank…each poem [is] charged with an undeniable exuberance, willing to hold forth on the unvarnished injustice so visible in the American grain, and to compose a music from this framework as mellifluous as any Luther Vandross track and as rough and ready as Raekwon’s Only Built 4 Cuban Linx.” -Best American Poetry Blog (Read the full review.)

“Some of the most exciting works of poetry defy easy categorization, and Alan King’s Point Blank…blurs a lot of lines. …the poems… display a deep humanity and gentleness at the same time. …There[‘s his] beauty of language — both the measured, poetic kind and the sorts of everyday speech you’re likely to hear on the street, in the store, or at the bar…” -Nimrod International Journal (Read the full review.)

“Alan King’s work is big — political, social in its scope, unwavering in its commitments to justice — but it also feels intimate, personal and complex.” –Karen Anderson, English professor and director of the VOICES Series at St. Mary’s College of Maryland (Read the full review.)

“Alan King’s narrative poems…telegraph a story, a plot, and a lifetime in just a few lines.” Washington City Paper (Read the full review.)

[Point] Blank finds King in form as a storyteller or narrator of city life, much like Illmatic does with Nas or Lost In the City does with Edward P. Jones.” -Auburn Avenue (Read the full review.)

“Alan King’s…Point Blank…weaves…an ekphrastic reflection on life as a Black man in America.” Run and Tell That (Read the full review.)

“In Point Blank, we are given an intimate look at one man’s inner and outer life, but there’s no navel-gazing nonsense. There’s always an awareness implied or explicit of the political crucible. With language both tough-minded and celebratory, Alan King ignites the important details of his experience, compelling us to ask what-plus-what added up to our own lives.” –Tim Seibles, Virginia’s Poet Laureate and author of One Turn Around The Sun (see visual version)

“Alan King is one of my favorite up and coming poets of his generation. His poems are not pop and flash, rather more like a slow dance with someone you’re going to love forever. Here you will find poignant slices of life, so bright in a rough age of race killings and hate speech. He reminds us that what matters has always mattered.” –Joy Harjo, poet, musician, performer, and teacher  see visual version)

“The central principle in King’s new book is how people live and how life defines them, not always to the good. The Big Reveal is that, despite prejudice and mistreatment, there’s always strong ground to stand on — mercy too — and a poet’s illustrious spirit and senses refining tough situations. …words…they’ll lie dormant until an Alan King makes truth graphic, raising the bar for poetry.” –Grace Cavalieri, The Washington Independent Review of Books (see visual version)