Arts & Culture

Some Thoughts on Citizenship and Poetics
Arts & Culture / International / Politics / The Reading Room / Vol. 1 No. 2

Some Thoughts on Citizenship and Poetics

As a poet and essayist, I think of poetry as creative heuristics, a means to investigate the world and experience through language, community, identity and politics. In poetry, writer and reader engage the contents of our categorical thinking, formally and informally (in custom and usage), as well as the limits, […]

To Shake or Be Shook Down
Arts & Culture / The Reading Room / Vol. 1 No. 2

To Shake or Be Shook Down

Once as a girl, she dreamed an urban kingdom. In the time of the dream, women of the kingdom were squatting over toilets, over gold chamberpots. There was one man—he was understood as the king—in all the imagined city. And this “king” walked among the women and among the pots. […]

The Hudson River: An Autobiography
Arts & Culture / The Reading Room / Vol. 1 No. 2

The Hudson River: An Autobiography

PART IV: VISIONS IN HISTORY This town’s edge, a collapsing shore, seems always to be where live the poor. In my mother’s time, they called us river rats,/ now the words mix insults/ of race, stones on our tongues we spit at others. * * * * * History’s latest […]

At Shakespeare’s Bed
Arts & Culture / The Reading Room / Vol. 1 No. 2

At Shakespeare’s Bed

Among the rubble of our wounded nation the vibrant image of a lyric warrior haunts my fragile solitude, the canopy above his sleep after long years’ scribbling blank as silent centuries since departed. Plays and poems do not heal politics. A writer’s skyward reach, earthly guesswork’s intuition, gathers straw and […]

Banana Boat Moon Selection: Five Poems
Arts & Culture / The Reading Room / Vol. 1 No. 2

Banana Boat Moon Selection: Five Poems

Banana Boat Moon And a hibiscus behind your ear like the exotically melancholy singer though you are a mad cap trickster who changes your birthday from hurricane time to June 11 on a spring whim in route to the place you claim to be born in it rolls off your […]

The Substance of Style: On Being Unapologetically Black Now
Arts & Culture / Convergence / Politics / Vol. 1 No. 2

The Substance of Style: On Being Unapologetically Black Now

Why does being “unapologetically black” matter now? The Black Lives Matter movement put these words “unapologetically black” in motion through their written statements and the embodied signage of t-shirts, bags, and other body work. A Black Lives Matter t-shirt with the “nutritional facts” label for “Unapologetically Black” declares: “Serving Size: […]

The Hudson River: An Autobiography
Arts & Culture / Convergence / Politics / The Reading Room / Vol. 1 No. 1

The Hudson River: An Autobiography

PART I: Muheakantuck Much earlier, for some thousands of years, there lived here the Lenni Lenape people, “the true people,” thought to be the eldest and who were given deference among other Algonkian speaking peoples of the forest civilizations. They are the first settlers and hence the ancestors of all […]

Our United Fates
Arts & Culture / Convergence / Politics / Vol. 1 No. 1

Our United Fates

From one many Many one Facts on ground Head in clouds More perfect, less perfect Imperfect, just perfect Less than we thought More to become No man’s land That is our land Sojourners on way To where we cannot say Don’t forget that caviar Is just fish eggs in a […]

Sketches toward an independence day poem
Arts & Culture / Convergence / Politics / Vol. 1 No. 1

Sketches toward an independence day poem

I. 1859 “What to the Slave is the fourth of July?” asked Frederick Douglass the abolitionist prophet once enslaved who stole and then wrote himself free. Today I think Lonely.   II. 2015 The hurricane has been down graded to a tropical storm but there is poetic justice despite the […]