POINT BLANK Year in Review

On Oct. 18, 2016, Silver Birch Press took a chance with me and published my latest poetry collection, POINT BLANK. A lot happened since then. For starters, I got a review in the Washington City Paper. My book made a Winter Reading list and was promoted at 25 readings/book signings. I even got blessed by a […]

How It Feels

I’m grateful to Rattle for publishing my poem, “How It Feels,” in their current issue. I also appreciate the encouraging words from friends. I’m dedicating the poem to any new parent(s) who’s had to defend their best choices against others’ judgments.

The Birth of POINT BLANK

  This piece was written for Free Black Space, an awesome blog by Yao Glover. Here’s an excerpt:   I’m a different poet now than I was when I wrote DRIFT. I wasn’t a father at the time and I’d written most of the poems before meeting my wife. I was a single guy that […]

A Poet on his Way to a Reading

Yesterday, I left work around 9:30am and hopped the red line to the Tenleytown Metro Station. During my 13-minute walk, I took a deep breath and exhaled – praying that I don’t bore the students and that I don’t get caught off-guard with a question. While the nervousness is normal for my school visits, that […]

Willow Books, The Motown Records of Book Publishing

Started in 2007, Willow Books, an imprint of Aquarius Press, is still in its childhood. Yet the six-year-old Detroit-based press is rapidly becoming the Motown Records of book publishing. As America’s top Black-owned and operated record company and business, Motown Records signified a new day. The cultural icon’s chart-topping singles and often-imitated sound embodied the […]

Rejoicing in the Church of Poetry

I’m coming off a high after graduation last month. I finished the Stonecoast M.F.A. Low-Residency Program at the University of Southern Maine, a two-year journey I started for time to write and complete another manuscript to shop around. It allowed me to expand my network, see Maine (a place I otherwise would not have visited), […]

Tim Seibles: A Product of Sweat and Patience

Understanding how Tim Seibles got the National Book Foundation’s attention requires some knowledge of neuroscience and of his persistence to be heard. At any moment, the human mind rapidly shifts between thoughts. It’s that movement Seibles mimicks when arranging the sections of his books. “If we’re really listening, we’ll go from rage to tenderness pretty […]

Curtis Crisler: Migration of a Latchkey Boy

Curtis Crisler’s unnamed speaker is a griot of sorts. His distant kin, fleeing from Jim Crow and southern domestic terrorism, joins the 5 million African Americans who decide to roll out. But they aren’t the first to do so. Others left before them during the first Great Migration (1910 to 1930), which swept two-thirds of 1.6 million […]