The Reading Room

“The Reading Room,” a regular feature of 
the A-Line: a journal of progressive thought, will highlight fiction and non-fiction of note in this salon-style series. We encourage you to return to this section of the journal regularly to select from exciting content.

Image Credit: Susan Bee, Votes for Women, 2018, 30" x 40", oil, enamel, sand, linen, Courtesy of the artist
Arts & Culture / The Reading Room / Vol. 2 No. 1-2

Poetic Citizenship and Negative Dialectics

Poetry is best that governs least. No it isn’t. Poetry and citizenship are inconsolably incommensurable, conjoined at the heart but beating time to different drummers. From time to time. Aesthetic justice is symbolic and dwells next to, not in, the world of political action. Give me a break! The politics […]

Image Credit: Lois Mailou Jones, Paris Rooftops, Montmartre, 1965, Courtesy of the Lois Mailou Jones Pierre-Noel Trust
Arts & Culture / The Reading Room / Vol. 2 No. 1-2

Almost Another Spring: Elegy for Our Moment

“But God, such a long journey ahead for you and me”
~ Andre Brink
i
this is a hard poem to begin.
old hopes return just piece by serrated piece,
teeth of cut glass but making way for tears-
see how my finger tip is polished with water – […]

Image Credit:Nanette Carter, Cantilevered #40 (Teetering),2018, oils on Mylar, 1' x 1' 9.75", Courtesy of the artist
Arts & Culture / International / Politics / The Reading Room / Vol. 2 No. 1-2

Jeff Nuttall’s Bomb Culture Revisited: Art, Politics, and the Underground 1

Jeff Nuttall (1933-2004) was a British artist, poet, critic, actor, and musician. The author of almost forty books, Nuttall was involved in the Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament (CND) from the late 1950s, and then played a major role in the British counter-cultural scene. During the 1960s, Nuttall edited My Own […]

Image Credit: Charles Frederick, Una Noche del SIDA, 2018, Courtesy of the artist
Arts & Culture / Health / Politics / The Reading Room / Vol. 2 No. 1-2

Last Night While I was Dreaming

last night while I was dreaming                 two of my dearest friends (old loves) visited me (needing a place to stay they said         as had once always been so)                       […]

Image Credit: Gopal Dagnogo, Chairs and sneakers, 2018, 180 x 180cm, Courtesy of the artist
Arts & Culture / The Reading Room / Vol. 2 No. 1-2

Cringe and other poems

Cringe
That’s how the earth wore you, bent,
Crushed by the sky, too,
As if the blue
Had always been too
Heavy with rain, scent
And chance, but not the chance […]

Image Credit: Arthur Jafa, Micah, 2017, (2004), Courtesy of the artist and Gavin Brown’s enterprise, New York/Rome
Arts & Culture / The Reading Room / Vol. 2 No. 1-2

Sufficient Knowledge

Look carefully, describe what you see. Choose a landscape provoking interest. Mull that carefully again and again. Concoct an assumption: what       have you pursued, how does it work? Gather evidence, examine its relevance. Calibrate each fragment’s adequacy. Dissatisfied, pursue a new assumption. If clarity seems possible, push […]

Image Credit: Nanette Carter, Cantilevered #42 (Teetering), 2018, oils on Mylar, 1' x 1' 9.75"
Arts & Culture / The Reading Room / Vol. 2 No. 1-2

Introduction to Furious Flower Profile

Introduction I am excited to introduce the readers of the A-Line: a journal of progressive thought to the work of the Furious Flower Poetry Center. Furious Flower, the very name speaks to the literary activism and agency that birthed the nation’s first academic center dedicated to African American poetry. Our […]

Image Credit: Virgie Ezelle Patton, Black 'm-Oceans: Close Quarters, (1985-2012), Oil on Canvas, 48 x 38, Courtesy of Ezelle-Patton Family Collection
Arts & Culture / The Reading Room / Vol. 2 No. 1-2

Dis/Place and other poems

Dis/Place In this place, we swear and sing and hail and honk. This is a noisy little island, loud in color, exuberant in sound. We paint our houses the colors of flamingoes and goldfish, vivid indigoes, mints, saffron and coral. Even the sunsets are washes of hasty undiluted color, quick […]

Image Credit: Gopal Dagnogo, End of an era n 4, 2016, 150 x 150cm, Courtesy of the artist
Arts & Culture / Convergence / The Reading Room / Vol. 2 No. 1-2

from Defining Moments Montage

Betty Jean Owens, an African American woman who was raped by four white men—Patrick Gene Scarborough, David Erwin Beagles, Ollie Odell Stoutamire, and William Ted Collinsworth– in Tallahassee, Fl; May, 1959. The trial was a landmark case, covered at the time by the BBC and international news outlets. This was […]

Image Credit: Virgie Ezelle Patton, In Senegal, Women of Color, (1980s), Watercolor on Paper, 24 x 32, Courtesy of the Ted Sherron Collection
Arts & Culture / The Reading Room / Vol. 2 No. 1-2

Stay Lit and other poems

Stay Lit The day after Charlottesville was lit with tiki torches, not lit like parties making night shine like Hennessey, but lit like crosses or a man’s eyes before rope tightens. I found myself with no tears available, all rage exhausted. I walked to my kitchen and concentrated on tearing […]