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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Apr 25 2018
Gabrielle Civil & Miguel Gutierrez
Gabrielle Civil is a black feminist performance artist, poet, and writer, originally from Detroit MI. Her writing and translations can be found in the anthologies Kitchen Table Translation, Walk Towards It, and Writing through the Visual and the Virtual. She has also guest-edited special issues of Aster(ix) and Obsidian and contributed to Small Axe, Art21, Two Lines, and Something on Paper. She has premiered almost fifty original solo and collaborative performance art works around the world, including a year-long investigation as a Fulbright Fellow in Mexico and a trilogy of diaspora grief works after the 2010 earthquake in Haiti. Her memoir in performance art Swallow the Fish was named by Entropy as a “Best Non Fiction Book of 2017.” Her forthcoming book Experiments in Joy engages race, performance, and collaboration. The aim of her work is to open up space.
Miguel Gutierrez’s current fascination is thinking about how being a queer Latin-American dance artist relates to the legacy of (predominantly white) abstraction. This will be the conceptual framework for a new group piece for Latinx performers called This Bridge Called My Ass. Other current activities: a cabaret show called SADONNA (sad versions of Madonna songs), running LANDING – an educational and mentoring program at Gibney, touring the Bessie award winning John Bernd project (co-directed with Ishmael Houston-Jones), touring as a musician with Colin Self in Jen Rosenblit and Simone Aughterlony’s Everything Fits in the Room, writing a TV show with his sister about their family, writing a second book, and working as a Feldenkrais Method practitioner.
131 E 10th Street
10003 New York, New York
Apr 26 2018
Blackbird Poetry Festival

Award-winning poet and author Marilyn Chin headlines the tenth annual Blackbird Poetry Festival for HoCoPoLitSo. Born in Hong Kong and raised in Oregon, activist poet Chin unflinchingly explores the intersection of the Asian and American worlds.

The Blackbird Poetry Festival is a day devoted to verse, with student workshops, book sales, readings, and patrols by the Poetry Police.

2:30 p.m. — The Sunbird Reading – Smith Theatre – featuring Ms. Chin, as well as Washington, D.C., poet and educator Joseph Ross, local authors, and Howard Community College faculty and students.

7:30 p.m. — The Nightbird Reading – Smith Theatre. Ms. Chin will read from and discuss her poetry, including her most recent work, Hard Love Province, as well as from earlier works. Tickets are $20 each (seniors $15 and students $10). Click here for tickets to the Nightbird Reading.

Hard Love Province won the 2015 Anisfield-Wolf National Prize for Literature that confronts racism and examines diversity. Former winners of this prize include Martin Luther King, Jr. and Malcolm X, Toni Morrison and Maxine Hong Kingston, Gwendolyn Brooks and Oprah Winfrey.

Marilyn Chin co-directs the MFA program at San Diego State University and has won numerous awards for her poetry, including from the Radcliffe Institute at Harvard, the Rockefeller Foundation, the National Endowment for the Arts, Stegner Fellowship, the PEN/Josephine Miles Award, four Pushcart Prizes, the Paterson Prize, and many others.

Joseph Ross’s newest collection of poems, Ache, was published in 2017. Sarah Browning, director of Split This Rock, noted “The poems in Ache do just that, they ache – from the wounds inflicted by racism, from history’s ravages. The wail, the poems insist, ‘is the language/inside every tongue.’ Joseph Ross’s moral vision is unsparing, truth-telling, fierce.”

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2:30pm to 9:00pm
10901 Little Patuxent Parkway
21044 Columbia, New York
Apr 26 2018
The Tenth Muse with Eileen Myles

Eileen Myles — “a kick-ass, counter-cultural icon,” wrote The New Yorker — takes on a longstanding Poetry Center tradition, curating and introducing readings by three of their favorite poets: Laura Henriksen, Tommy Pico, and Christopher Soto.

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1395 Lexington Avenue
10128 New York, New York

recent & featured listings

type name state
Small Press Four Way Books New York
Writing Program New York University MFA New York
Landmark The American Poets' Corner at the Cathedral Church of St. John the Divine New York
Small Press Turtle Point Press New York
Poetry-Friendly Bookstore Community Bookstore New York
Writing Program Stony Brook Southampton New York
Literary Magazine African Voices New York
Writing Program City College (CUNY) New York
Poetry-Friendly Bookstore Mast Books New York
Literary Magazine A Gathering of the Tribes 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...


Long vast shapes... cooled and flushed through with darkness...
Lidless windows
Glazed with a flashy luster
From some little pert café chirping up like a sparrow.
And down among iron guts
Piled silver
Throwing gray spatter of light... pale without heat...
Like the pallor of dead bodies.
The instructor said,

    Go home and write
    a page tonight.
    And let that page come out of you—
    Then, it will be true.

I wonder if it's that simple?
I am twenty-two, colored, born in Winston-Salem.
I went to school there, then Durham, then here
to this college on the hill
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