New York

Continuing his support of New York's rich literary tradition, in January 2016 Governor Cuomo appointed Yusef Komunyakaa as New York's 11th state poet, taking over for Marie Howe. Throughout his two-year term, the poet laureate promotes and encourages poetry writing throughout New York by giving public readings and talks within the state.

In 2016 Rebecca Black was appointed the poet laureate of Albany, New York. Black is the author of Cottonlandia (University of Massachusetts Press, 2005), winner of the Juniper Prize for Poetry.

upcoming events

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Mar 27 2018
Poets on Craft: Cyrus Cassells and Khadijah Queen
Join us for an exciting evening of poetry and conversation between poets Cyrus Cassells and Khadijah Queen. The recipient of two Pushcart Prizes, Cassells is the author is six books, including his most recent, The Gospel According to Wild Indigo (Southern Illinois University Press, 2018).Queen is the author is five publications. Her most recent collection, I’m So Fine: A List of Famous Men & What I Had On (YesYes Books 2017), was a finalist for the 2015 National Poetry Series. Jayson P. Smith, a 2017 NYSCA/NYFA Artist Fellow in Poetry, moderates. Free and open to the public. Co-sponsored by The New School Creative Writing Program.
Cyrus Cassells poetry examines personal encounters with history, love and eroticism, and suffering and violence. His newest collection, The Gospel According to Wild Indigo (Southern Illinois University Press; March 5, 2018), was described by U.S. Poet Laureate Tracy K. Smith as “an ecstasy, a god’s-eye-view of place, time, and the vivid revelations.” Cassells is also the author of The Mud Actor (1982), winner of the 1981 National Poetry Series competition; Soul Make a Path through Shouting (1994), winner of the William Carlos William Award; Beautiful Signor (1997), winner of the Lambda Literary Award; More Than Peace and Cypresses (2004); and The Crossed-Out Swastika (2012). Cassells has held fellowships with the National Endowment for the Arts and the Rockefeller Foundation. He has received the Lannan Literary Award, the Peter I.B. Lavan Younger Poet Award, and two Pushcart Prizes. Cassells, who also works as a translator, film critic, and actor, teaches at the MFA program at Texas State University-San Marcos. He lives in Austin.
Khadijah Queen is the author of five books of poetry and hybrid prose, most recently I’m So Fine: A List of Famous Men & What I Had On (YesYes Books 2017). Her verse play Non-Sequitur (Litmus Press 2015) won the Leslie Scalapino Award for Innovative Women’s Performance Writing. The prize included a full staged production of the play at Theaterlab NYC from December 10 – 20, 2015 by Fiona Templeton’s The Relationship theater company. Individual poems and prose appear in Fence, Tin House, Buzzfeed, Gulf Coast, The Offing, jubilat, Memoir, Best American Nonrequired Reading, DIAGRAM, The Force of What’s Possible and widely elsewhere. She serves as core faculty in poetry and playwriting for the low residency Mile-High MFA in creative writing at Regis University, and is Visiting Scholar in Creative Writing at University of Colorado, Boulder.
55 West 13th Street
10011 New York, New York
Feb 23 2018
New Works: Kamilah Aisha Moon, Marcus Wicker and Yolanda Wisher
Hear three brilliant Cave Canem fellows read work from their new and debut collections. Kamilah Aisha Moon is the author of Starshine & Clay (Four Way Books, 2017), of which Grace Cavalieri says, “this heroic writing is in the spirit of Nina Simone’s Mississippi Goddamn!” Pushcart Prize winner Marcus Wicker’s second collection, Silencer (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2017), has been praised by Adrian Matejka as “masterful and hard-hitting…exactly the book we need.”  The 2016-17 Poet Laureate of Philadelphia, Yolanda Wisher’s debut, Monk Eats an Afro (Small Press Distribution, 2014), was described by Sonia Sanchez as a collection of “exquisite poems.” Free and open to the public. This event is co-sponsored by the NYU Creative Writing Program.
A Pushcart Prize winner, Lambda Award finalist and a 2015 New American Poet who has received fellowships to Vermont Studio Center, Rose O’Neill Literary House, Center for Faith and Work, Hedgebrook and Cave Canem, Kamilah Aisha Moon‘s work has been featured widely, including in Harvard Review, Poem-A-Day, Prairie Schooner, Best of the Net, and elsewhere. Featured nationally at conferences, festivals and universities including the Library of Congress and Princeton University, she holds an M.F.A. from Sarah Lawrence College and has taught at several institutions, including Rutgers University-Newark and Columbia University. A native of Nashville, TN, she is an Assistant Professor of Poetry and Creative Writing at Agnes Scott College.
Marcus Wicker is the recipient of a Ruth Lilly Fellowship from the Poetry Foundation, a Pushcart Prize, The Missouri Review‘s Miller Audio Prize, as well as fellowships from Cave Canem and the Fine Arts Work Center.  His first collection, Maybe the Saddest Thing, a National Poetry Series winner, was a finalist for an NAACP Image Award.  Wicker’s poems have appeared in The Nation, Poetry, American Poetry Review, Oxford American, and Boston Review. His second book, Silencer, was published in 2017 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. Marcus teaches in the MFA program at the University of Memphis and is the poetry editor of Southern Indiana Review.
Yolanda Wisher is the author of Monk Eats an Afro (Hanging Loose Press, 2014) and the co-editor of Peace is a Haiku Song (Philadelphia Mural Arts, 2013) with Sonia Sanchez. Her work has been featured in a variety of media including Gathering Ground: A Reader Celebrating Cave Canem’s First Decade, GOOD Magazine, The Philadelphia Inquirer, Contemporary Black Canvas, Radio Times, PoetryNOW, Ploughshares, and CBC Radio. A Pew Fellow & Hedgebrook Writer-in-Residence, Wisher was named the inaugural Poet Laureate of Montgomery County Pennsylvania in 1999 and the third Poet Laureate of Philadelphia in 2016. She served as Director of Art Education for Philadelphia Mural Arts, and founded and directed the Germantown Poetry and Outbound Poetry Festivals. She has led workshops and curated events in partnership with the Philadelphia Museum of Art, Free Library of Philadelphia, and U.S. Department of Arts & Culture. Wisher is currently the 2017-2018 CPCW Fellow in Poetics and Poetic Practice at the University of Pennsylvania.
58 W 10th Street
10003 New York, New York
Feb 13 2018
A Tribute to Thomas Lux
Join us in celebrating and honoring the life and work of the late Thomas Lux. Featuring readings and remembrances from Amber Tamblyn, Vijay Seshadri, Patrick Rosal, Mary Karr, Marie Howe, Edward Hirsch, Terrance Hayes, and Billy Collins. The tribute will be introduced by Jeffrey McDaniel and include a poem set to music by Joan as Police Woman.
Co-sponsored by Academy of American Poets, Poetry Society of America, Poets House, Sarah Lawrence College, Lost & Found: The CUNY Poetics Document Initiative, and the Center for the Humanities at the Graduate Center, CUNY.   
365 Fifth Avenue
10016 New York, New York

recent & featured listings

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Festival Brooklyn Book Festival New York
Festival New York Poetry Festival New York
Festival Spring Poetry Festival at City College of New York New York
Reading Series 92nd Street Y New York
Reading Series Katonah Poetry Series New York
Colony Millay Colony for the Arts New York
Colony Yaddo Colony New York
Writing Program Stony Brook Southampton New York
Writing Program Manhattanville College New York
Writing Program The New School New York
Poetry in New York
Yusef Komunyakaa
New York poet laureate

Yusef Komunyakaa

Poet Yusef Komunyakaa first received wide recognition following the 1984 publication of Copacetic, a collection of poems built from colloquial speech...



I get off the IRT in front of the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture after riding an early Amtrak from Philly to get a hair cut at what used to be the Harlem "Y" barbershop. It gets me in at ten to ten. Waiting, I eat fish cakes at the Pam Pam and listen to the ladies call out orders: bacon-biscuit

Under the separated leaves of shade
Of the gingko, that old tree
That has existed essentially unchanged
Longer than any other living tree, 
I walk behind a woman. Her hair's coarse gold
Is spun from the sunlight that it rides upon.
Women were paid to knit from sweet champagne
Her second skin: it winds and
In the sky there is nobody asleep.  Nobody, nobody.
Nobody is asleep.
The creatures of the moon sniff and prowl about their cabins.
The living iguanas will come and bite the men who do not dream,
and the man who rushes out with his spirit broken will meet on the 
            street corner
the unbelievable