graphic for Emily Dickinson Poetry Marathon 2022 - Tell It Slant Festival

Emily Dickinson Poetry Marathon
September 19-25

Hybrid Program

Part of the 2022 Tell It Slant Poetry Festival

graphic for Emily Dickinson Poetry Marathon 2022 - Tell It Slant Festival

Join us for the week-long Emily Dickinson Poetry Marathon! An Emily Dickinson Museum tradition, the Marathon is a group reading of all 1,789 poems by Emily Dickinson over the course of 7 sessions. For this year’s hybrid Festival, some sessions will take place in-person and others online. For the Marathon, we will be reading from Ralph Franklin’s The Poems of Emily Dickinson: Reading Edition.

Marathon session times and reader sign-ups are located in the Festival platform on Sched. To access the platform, register for the Festival and look for your e-mail confirmation containing the link to Sched.

REGISTER FOR THE FESTIVAL

To attend any Marathon session online as a listener, please register for the Festival using the link above, and add the session to your schedule. To reserve a spot as a reader, please use the forms linked below.

Reader sign-up forms for in-person sessions:

Saturday, Sept. 24 10am-12pm

Sunday, Sept. 25 1:30-4:30pm

Reader sign-up forms for virtual sessions:

Wednesday, Sept. 21 2-4pm

Thursday, Sept. 22 7:30-9:30pm

Friday, Sept. 23 12-2pm

 

Support The Tell It Slant Poetry Festival and Honor Someone Special:
Admission to all Festival events is free, but online donations, especially those made in honor or memory of family, friends, or colleagues are heartily encouraged and vital to the future of this beloved annual event. All gifts are tax deductible and will be recognized as part of the Festival.

 

2022 Tell It Slant Poetry Festival Schedule

graphic for Tell It Slant Poetry Festival program: Language, History, Identity

Language, History, Identity:
Poetry at the Intersections

Monday, Sept. 19, 7:30pm ET

Virtual Program

graphic for Tell It Slant Poetry Festival program: Language, History, Identity

Part of the 2022 Tell It Slant Poetry Festival

In this interactive panel and generative workshop, panelists Leonora Simonovis, Farnaz Fatemi, and Cynthia Parker Ohene will explore the intersections of language, migration, gender (bodies and boundaries), history, family, and patriarchy, and how these forces have shaped their identities as women from historically marginalized groups. The panel’s discussion will weave in short readings from the poets’ own work to address how each individual approaches these topics and how the themes intersect with the larger communities they belong to. Following the discussion, each poet will offer a generative writing prompt inspired by elements of their work. Participants will leave the panel with new tools to write about home, family and history.

REGISTER FOR THE FESTIVAL


About the poets:

Leonora Simonovis is the author of Study of the Raft, winner of the 2021 Colorado Prize for Poetry. Her work has appeared in Gargoyle, Kweli Journal, Diode Poetry Journal, Tinderbox Poetry Journal, and The Rumpus, among others. Her poems have also been featured in Verse Daily, Sims Library of Poetry, and CIACLA (Contemporary Irish Center, Los Angeles). She has been the recipient of fellowships from Women Who Submit (WWS), VONA, and the Poetry Foundation.


Farnaz Fatemi is an Iranian American poet, editor and writing teacher in Santa Cruz, CA. Her debut book, Sister Tongue, won the 2021 Stan and Tom Wick Poetry Prize (selected by Tracy K. Smith) and is forthcoming from Kent State University Press. Her poetry and prose appears in Grist Journal, Catamaran Literary Reader, Crab Orchard Review, SWWIM Daily, Tahoma Literary Review,Tupelo Quarterly, phren-z.org, and several anthologies.


Cynthia Parker-Ohene is a three-time Pushcart nominee, abolitionist, cultural worker, and therapist. She is an MFA graduate in Creative Writing at Saint Mary’s College of California, and the Chester Aaron Scholar for Excellence in Creative Writing. Her recent work has appeared in The Rumpus, Black Warrior Review, Bellevue Literary Review, Kweli, Green Mountains Review, and West Branch, among others. Her book Daughters of Harriet was published in March 2022.


Support The Tell It Slant Poetry Festival and Honor Someone Special:
Admission to all Festival events is free, but online donations, especially those made in honor or memory of family, friends, or colleagues are heartily encouraged and vital to the future of this beloved annual event. All gifts are tax deductible and will be recognized as part of the Festival.


2022 Tell It Slant Poetry Festival Schedule

graphic for Tell It Slant Poetry Festival program: Wild Nights

Wild Nights:
Writing the Queer Love Poem

Tuesday, Sept. 20, 6pm ET

Virtual Program

graphic for Tell It Slant Poetry Festival program: Wild Nights

Part of the 2022 Tell It Slant Poetry Festival

How is a queer love poem different from a heterosexual love poem? How have the contours of queer courtship been transformed as LGBTQ+ people have become more visible in our culture? In this panel, LGBTQ+ poets read queer love poems from their own ouvre and by other American poets of note, and then discuss some of the issues this work raises. Audience members are encouraged to engage and will leave with recommended readings.


REGISTER FOR THE FESTIVAL

About the poets:

Saida Agostini is a queer Afro-Guyanese poet from Silver Spring, whose work explores the ways Black folks harness mythology to enter the fantastic. Her first book is let the dead in.


Tanya Olson lives in Silver Spring, and is a lecturer in English at the University of Maryland Baltimore County. Her book Boyishly received a 2014 American Book Award. Her second book is Stay.


Kim Roberts is a resident of the Park View neighborhood of DC. She edited By Broad Potomac’s Shore, selected for Route 1 Reads as the book that “best illuminates important aspects” of the culture of Washington. She is the author of five books of poems, most recently The Scientific Method.


Malik Thompson is a Black queer man from the Mt. Pleasant neighborhood of DC. He works as a bookstore manager for Black, queer-owned Loyalty Bookstores in Petworth, DC, and is co-chair of OutWrite DC, an annual LGBTQ+ literary festival.


Dan Vera lives in the Brookland neighborhood of DC. He is co-editor of Imaniman: Poets Writing in the Anzaldúan Borderlands and author of two books of poetry, Speaking Wiri Wiri and The Space Between Our Danger and Delight.


Support The Tell It Slant Poetry Festival and Honor Someone Special:
Admission to all Festival events is free, but online donations, especially those made in honor or memory of family, friends, or colleagues are heartily encouraged and vital to the future of this beloved annual event. All gifts are tax deductible and will be recognized as part of the Festival.


2022 Tell It Slant Poetry Festival Schedule

graphic for Tell It Slant Poetry Festival program: This is my letter to the World:

This is My Letter to the World:
High School Workshops with Samar Abulhassan

Private Workshops

graphic for Tell It Slant Poetry Festival program: This is my letter to the World:

Part of the 2022 Tell It Slant Poetry Festival

In this workshop, we light up the poem-making hour with intention, inspiration, and a vibrant-safe space to make our own creations. High school students are offered a carefully curated sample of Emily Dickinson’s work, and a few clips from the Apple TV show Dickinson. The heart of each class is reserved for student writing, engaging in creating powerful, compact verse. Each student would leave with their own unique letter to the world.

REGISTER FOR THE FESTIVAL


About the poet:

Samar Abulhassan (she/her) holds an MFA in Creative Writing from Colorado State University. Born to Lebanese immigrants and raised with multiple languages, she is a 2006 Hedgebrook alum and the author of several chapbooks. Samar is a full time teaching artist and just completed her 14th year of guiding young poets through Seattle Arts & Lectures’ Writers in the Schools. Nocturnal by nature, she often gets her best ideas at night, and is inspired by the ocean, music and dance. In 2016, Samar received a CityArtist grant to aid in completing a novel-in-poems reflecting on memory, longing, and the Arabic alphabet.


Support The Tell It Slant Poetry Festival and Honor Someone Special:
Admission to all Festival events is free, but online donations, especially those made in honor or memory of family, friends, or colleagues are heartily encouraged and vital to the future of this beloved annual event. All gifts are tax deductible and will be recognized as part of the Festival.


2022 Tell It Slant Poetry Festival Schedule

graphic for Tell It Slant Poetry Festival program: Trust the Process

Trust the Process
with Poet and Musician Tim Hall

Wednesday, Sept. 21, 7pm ET

Hybrid Program

graphic for Tell It Slant Poetry Festival program: Trust the Process

Part of the 2022 Tell It Slant Poetry Festival

Tim Hall brings you Trust The Process – a live performance infusion of poetry, storytelling, and music about creative expression, self love, and artistic exploration. Hall’s poetry draws inspiration from his lived experiences – charting the nuances of blackness, masculinity, and the beauties of life.

REGISTER FOR THE FESTIVAL


About Tim Hall:

Tim Hall is an award winning musician and performance poet from Detroit, MI, now residing in Boston. He’s an Assistant Professor in the Professional Music Department at Berklee College of Music, won Session Musician of the Year by the Boston Music Awards 2020, received a 2019 Artist Luminary Award from local youth arts non-profit Zumix, and was honored by WBUR’s ARTery 25 as 1 of 25 millennials of color impacting Arts and Culture in Boston. Writings of his have been published in: Proud Flesh – Afrikan Journal of Culture, Politics, & Consciousness; Mass Poetry – Hard Work of Hope; Vagabond Publishing; and Whisper & Roar Publishing, and currently Hall’s poetry lives in City Hall as he work was selected to be part of Mayor Wu’s Poetry project.


Support The Tell It Slant Poetry Festival and Honor Someone Special:
Admission to all Festival events is free, but online donations, especially those made in honor or memory of family, friends, or colleagues are heartily encouraged and vital to the future of this beloved annual event. All gifts are tax deductible and will be recognized as part of the Festival.


2022 Tell It Slant Poetry Festival Schedule

Phosphorescence graphics for September 2022

Phosphorescence Poetry Reading Series
Thursday, September 22, 6pm ET

Phosphorescence September 2022 featured poets:
Jessica Cuello, Eugenia Leigh, and Joan Kwon Glass

VIRTUAL PROGRAM

This virtual program is free to attend. Registration is required. 

Part of the 2022 Tell It Slant Poetry Festival

To Emily Dickinson, phosphorescence, was a divine spark and the illuminating light behind learning — it was volatile, but transformative in nature. Produced by the Emily Dickinson Museum, the Phosphorescence Poetry Reading Series celebrates contemporary creativity that echoes Dickinson’s own revolutionary poetic voice. The Series features established and emerging poets whose work and backgrounds represent the diversity of the flourishing contemporary poetry scene. The 2021 Series will be a virtual event to ensure the health and safety of participants. While we are disappointed not to gather together in Amherst, we are excited to connect with a global community of friends and writers.  Join us on the last Thursdays of each month to hear from poets around the world as they read their work and discuss what poetry and Dickinson mean to them.

Phosphorescence Lineup 2022

REGISTER FOR THE FESTIVAL


About this month’s poets:

headshot of poet Jessica Cuello

Jessica Cuello’s manuscript, Liar, has been selected by Dorianne Laux for the 2020
Barrow Street Book Prize, forthcoming in October 2021. She is also the author of Pricking (Tiger Bark Press 2016), winner of the 2017 CNY Book Award, and Hunt (The Word Works 2017), winner of the 2016 Washington Prize. In addition, Cuello has published three chapbooks: My Father’s Bargain (2015), By Fire (2013), and Curie (2011). Cuello was the recipient of The 2018 New Ohio Review Poetry Prize, The 2013 New Letters Poetry Prize, and a 2015 Saltonstall Writing Fellowship. In 2014 she was awarded The Decker Award from Hollins University for outstanding secondary teaching. She teaches French in Central NY and is a poetry editor for Tahoma Literary Review.
jessicacuello.com


headshot of poet Eugenia LeighEugenia Leigh is a Korean American poet and the author of Bianca (Four Way Books, forthcoming 2023) and Blood, Sparrows and Sparrows (Four Way Books, 2014). Her poems and essays have appeared in numerous publications including The Nation, Pleiades, Ploughshares, Poetry, Waxwing, and the 2017 Best of the Net Anthology. The recipient of Poetry’s 2021 Bess Hokin Prize as well as fellowships and awards from Poets & Writers Magazine, Kundiman, and elsewhere, Eugenia received her MFA from Sarah Lawrence College.
eugenialeigh.com

 


headshot of poet Joan Kwon Glass

Joan Kwon Glass (she/her) is the biracial, Korean American author of NIGHT SWIM, winner of the 2021 Diode Editions Book Contest, & is author of three chapbooks (Harbor Editions & Milk & Cake Press). Joan is the Editor-in-Chief of Harbor Review, a Brooklyn Poets mentor, poet laureate of Milford, CT & poetry co-editor of West Trestle Review.  She is a proud Smith College graduate & has been a public school educator for 20 years.  Her poems have appeared in Diode, Rattle, The Rupture, Dialogist, South Florida Poetry Journal & many others & have been nominated for the Pushcart Prize & Sundress Anthology Best of the Net. She grew up in Michigan & South Korea & lives in Connecticut with her family.
joankwonglass.com

 

 


Support Phosphorescence and Honor Someone Special:
Admission to all Phosphorescence events is free, but online donations, especially those made in honor or memory of family, friends, or colleagues are heartily encouraged and vital to the future of our programs. All gifts are tax deductible.

 

2022 Tell It Slant Poetry Festival Schedule

graphic for Tell It Slant Poetry Festival program: Poetry Isn't Perfect

Poetry Isn’t Perfect:
A Publication Panel with The Common

Friday, Sept. 23, 4pm ET

In-Person Program

graphic for Tell It Slant Poetry Festival program: Poetry Isn't Perfect

Part of the 2022 Tell It Slant Poetry Festival

Emerging writers of all ages will learn about the process of submitting poetry to literary platforms like The Common, an award-winning literary magazine with a sense of place and a global perspective. Join editorial assistants at The Common and a panel of established poets Jennifer Jean, Karen Skolfield, and Matt Donovan in discussing writing and submission processes from every angle. Writers will leave with concrete advice on inspiration, workflow, and the step-by-step process of literary publishing.

REGISTER FOR THE FESTIVAL


About the poets:

Jennifer Jean‘s poetry collection VOZ will be released in 2023 from Lily Books. Her other collections include OBJECT LESSON (Lily Books) and THE FOOL (Big Table). She’s also released the teaching resource OBJECT LESSON: A GUIDE TO WRITING POETRY (Lily Books). Her poems, prose, and co-translations have appeared in: Poetry Magazine, Rattle, The Common, On the Seawall, Waxwing, DMQ, Terrain; and, as an Academy of American Poets “Poem-a-Day.” She’s been awarded fellowships from the Kenyon Review Writers Workshop, Disquiet/Dzanc Books, and the Massachusetts Cultural Council; as well, she received an Ambassador for Peace Award from the Women’s Federation for World Peace. Jean is an organizer, and co-translator of Arabic poetry, for the Her Story Is collective. She edits poetry for Talking Writing and translations for Consequence Forum; and, is the program manager of 24PearlStreet, the Fine Arts Work Center’s online writing program.

Karen Skolfield’s book Battle Dress (W. W. Norton) won the 2020 Massachusetts Book Award in poetry and the Barnard Women Poets Prize. Her book Frost in the Low Areas (Zone 3 Press) won the 2014 PEN New England Award in poetry, and she is the winner of the 2016 Jeffrey E. Smith Editors’ Prize in poetry from The Missouri Review. Skolfield is a U.S. Army veteran and teaches writing to engineers at the University of Massachusetts Amherst; she served as poet laureate for Northampton, MA for 2019-2022. www.karenskolfield.com

Matt Donovan is the author most recently of The Dug-Up Gun Museum (BOA 2022) and the collection of lyric essays, A Cloud of Unusual Size and Shape: Meditations on Ruin and Redemption (Trinity University Press 2016). He is the recipient of a Whiting Award, a Rome Prize in Literature, a Creative Capital Grant, and an NEA Fellowship in Literature. He serves as Director of the Boutelle-Day Poetry Center at Smith College.


Facilitators:

Sarah Wu (she/her) is a prospective English and computer science major at Amherst College. She is an editorial assistant intern for The Common, and her short stories have been published in an anthology at The Dark Dispatch and the student literary magazine, The Indicator. She is currently fascinated in how the digital space interacts and enhances the literary experience and how AAPI authors encapsulate and subvert what is labeled as the “Asian American experience.”

Andrenae Jones (she/her) is an English and Film and Media Studies major at Amherst College. She is an editorial assistant intern for The Common, and her stories and essays have been published in Film Matters Journal and The Minetta Review. She is currently working toward a creative thesis written in poetry-prose hybrid that will explore her own personal experiences navigating racial liminality as a young mixed-race woman existing in historically white spaces.


Support The Tell It Slant Poetry Festival and Honor Someone Special:
Admission to all Festival events is free, but online donations, especially those made in honor or memory of family, friends, or colleagues are heartily encouraged and vital to the future of this beloved annual event. All gifts are tax deductible and will be recognized as part of the Festival.


2022 Tell It Slant Poetry Festival Schedule

graphic for Tell It Slant Poetry Festival program: Open Mic Night 2022

Poetry Open Mic
featuring Nathan McClain

Friday, Sept. 23, 7pm ET

In-Person Program

graphic for Tell It Slant Poetry Festival program: Open Mic Night 2022

Part of the 2022 Tell It Slant Poetry Festival

Let your voice be heard at our Festival open mic night! If you have longed to share your poetry in the safe and encouraging environment of Emily Dickinson’s garden, this is your chance. If you’d like to hear a wide variety of poets bravely sharing their work we hope to see you in the audience. Following the open mic, celebrated poet Nathan McClain reads from his new book Previously Owned (Four Way Books, 2022).

Open mic spots have filled, but there’s still plenty of room to enjoy fresh poetry in the garden!

REGISTER FOR THE FESTIVAL


About the poets:

Nathan McClain is the author of Scale (Four Way Books, 2017) and Previously Owned (Four Way Books, 2022), a recipient of fellowships from The Frost Place, Sewanee Writers’ Conference, Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference, and a graduate of the M.F.A. Program for Writers at Warren Wilson. A Cave Canem fellow, his poems and prose have recently appeared or are forthcoming in Poetry Northwest, Green Mountains Review, Zocalo Public Square, The Critical Flame, and On The Seawall, among others. He teaches at Hampshire College and serves as Poetry Editor for The Massachusetts Review.


Support The Tell It Slant Poetry Festival and Honor Someone Special:
Admission to all Festival events is free, but online donations, especially those made in honor or memory of family, friends, or colleagues are heartily encouraged and vital to the future of this beloved annual event. All gifts are tax deductible and will be recognized as part of the Festival.


2022 Tell It Slant Poetry Festival Schedule

graphic for Tell It Slant Poetry Festival program: After Dickinson and Disability

After Dickinson and Disability:
A Panel from Poetry Wales

Saturday, Sept. 24, 1pm ET

Virtual Program

graphic for Tell It Slant Poetry Festival program: After Dickinson and Disability

Part of the 2022 Tell It Slant Poetry Festival

Some readings of Dickinson’s poetics focus negatively on her potential writings about disability (from agoraphobia to Bright’s Disease), but this panel follows Dickinson critic Michael Davidson who takes a more radical Disability Studies stance, asking what gifts might be found in experiences of disability. This panel, organized by Poetry Wales editor Zoe Brigley, foregrounds work around disability and the experience of pain or chronic illness, featuring international poets who recently appeared in Poetry Wales’ special issue including Cy. Jillian Weise, Claudine Toutoungi, Hannah Hodgson, and Samuel Tongue.

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About the poets:

Zoë Brigley is the author of three books of poetry published by Bloodaxe: Hand & Skull (2019), Conquest (2012), and The Secret (2007), and recently published chapbooks with Broken Sleep: Aubade After A French Movie (2020), and Verve: Into Eros (2021). She also wrote a collection of nonfiction essays Notes from a Swing State (Parthian 2019) and co-wrote a pamphlet of creative nonfiction with Kristian Evans, Otherworlds: Writing on Nature and Magic (Broken Sleep 2021). Brigley is Assistant Professor in English at the Ohio State University where she produces an anti-violence podcast: “Sinister Myth”. She won an Eric Gregory Award for the best British poets under 30, was Forward Prize commended, and listed in the Dylan Thomas Prize.

The Cyborg Jillian Weise is a regular writer for the New York Times and author of Cyborg Detective (Boa 2019) and An Amputee’s Guide to Sex (Soft Skull reprint 2017).

Hannah Hodgson is an English writer and activist living with a terminal illness; she has worked with BBC Arts and Teen Vogue, received a prestigious Princess Diana Legacy Award, and recently published her debut collection 162 Days (Seren 2022).

Claudine Toutoungi is an award-winning playwright and poet, author of Two Tongues (Carcenet 2020), and her bittersweet drama about a relationship sparked in an ocular prosthetics clinic, Slipping, was selected for New York’s Lark Play Centre’s international HotINK series.

Scotland-based writer, Samuel Tongue, also explores sight in his poetry; he is author of Sacrifice Zones (Red Squirrel 2020), was poetry editor at the Glasgow Review of Books for six years and also co-edited New Writing Scotland for 3 issues.


Support The Tell It Slant Poetry Festival and Honor Someone Special:
Admission to all Festival events is free, but online donations, especially those made in honor or memory of family, friends, or colleagues are heartily encouraged and vital to the future of this beloved annual event. All gifts are tax deductible and will be recognized as part of the Festival.


2022 Tell It Slant Poetry Festival Schedule

graphic for Tell It Slant Poetry Festival program: Headliner Night with Tyehimba Jess and Sumita Chakraborty

Late Night Garden Party
with Tyehimba Jess, Sumita Chakraborty, and Lesley Dill’s ‘Divide Light’

Saturday, Sept. 24, 7pm ET

Hybrid Program

graphic for Tell It Slant Poetry Festival program: Headliner Night with Tyehimba Jess and Sumita Chakraborty

Part of the 2022 Tell It Slant Poetry Festival

UPDATE: 9/24 3PM: Please note Tyehimba Jess will not be able to be with us tonight due to an emergency. Our thoughts are with him and we hope to be able to find a way to bring him to the Museum in the near future. Matt Donovan will take the stage to read from his new book alongside Sumita Chakraborty this evening.

Join us in Emily Dickinson’s garden or virtually for a celebration of creativity and poetry!  Here to kick off the evening, celebrated artist Lesley Dill and filmmaker Ed Robbins share a glimpse of Divide Light, an Emily Dickinson opera, visual art, and film collaboration. Then our featured headlining poets, Pulitzer Prize winner Tyhemiba Jess and  Sumita Chakraborty read from their work and discuss their poetic practice and inspiration with facilitator Matt Donovan.  Stay for in-person music, refreshments, and a book signing to follow. 

REGISTER FOR THE FESTIVAL


About Divide Light:

Divide Light is an opera collaboration by Originator/Creative Director Lesley Dill and Composer Richard Marriott, and captured in film by Ed Robbins. It contemporizes the works of poet Emily Dickinson, linking the groundbreaking ideas of the mid-19th century American Transcendental movement to innovations and global concerns in today’s rapidly changing world. 

Lesley Dill is an American artist working at the intersection of language and fine art in printmaking, sculpture, installation, and performance, exploring the power of words to cloak and reveal the psyche. She is the recipient of the Emily Dickinson Museum’s 2019 Tell it Slant Award. Dill transforms the emotions of the writings of Emily Dickinson, Salvador Espriu, Tom Sleigh, Franz Kafka, and Rainer Maria Rilke into works of paper, wire, horsehair, foil, bronze, and music—works that awaken the viewer to the physical intimacy and power of language itself. Her opera, Divide Light, based on the poems of Emily Dickinson, was performed in San Jose in 2008. In April 2018 the New Camerata Opera Company performed a restaged version in New York City, which was captured in a full-length film by Ed Robbins. Dill’s artworks are in the collections of over fifty museums, including the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Museum of Modern Art New York, and the Whitney Museum of American Art. She has had over a hundred solo exhibitions. Dill lives and works in Brooklyn, New York.

Ed Robbins is an award winning Director-Writer-Producer and Digital Journalist. Drawn to stories of individuals in the face of adversity, he’s travelled extensively across America and internationally. The topics have ranged from social justice, crime, frontline war, the environment, human rights, religion, science, to the performing and visual arts. He’s written-produced numerous hour programs for television outlets that include PBS, Discovery Channel, TLC, Nat Geo Channel, ABC, NBC, and in the UK: BBC2 and Channel 4. 


About the poets:

Tyehimba Jess is the author of two books of poetry, Leadbelly and Olio. Olio won the 2017 Pulitzer Prize, the Anisfield-Wolf Book Award, The Midland Society Author’s Award in Poetry, and received an Outstanding Contribution to Publishing Citation from the Black Caucus of the American Library Association.  It was also nominated for the National Book Critics Circle Award, the PEN Jean Stein Book Award, and the Kingsley Tufts Poetry Award.  Leadbelly was a winner of the 2004 National Poetry Series. The Library Journal and Black Issues Book Review both named it one of the “Best Poetry Books of 2005.”

Jess, a Cave Canem and NYU Alumni, received a 2004 Literature Fellowship from the National Endowment for the Arts, and was a 2004–2005 Winter Fellow at the Provincetown Fine Arts Work Center. Jess is also a veteran of the 2000 and 2001 Green Mill Poetry Slam Team, and won a 2000–2001 Illinois Arts Council Fellowship in Poetry, the 2001 Chicago Sun-Times Poetry Award, and a 2006 Whiting Fellowship. He presented his poetry at the 2011 TedX Nashville Conference and won a 2016 Lannan Literary Award in Poetry. He received a Guggenheim fellowship in 2018. Jess is a Professor of English at College of Staten Island.  

Jess’ fiction and poetry have appeared in many journals, as well as anthologies such as Angles of Ascent: A Norton Anthology of Contemporary African American Poetry, Beyond The Frontier: African American Poetry for the Twenty-First Century, Role Call: A Generational Anthology of Social and Political Black Literature and Art, Bum Rush the Page: A Def Poetry Jam, Power Lines: Ten Years of Poetry from Chicago’s Guild Complex, and Slam: The Art of Performance Poetry.

Sumita Chakraborty is a poet, essayist, and scholar. She is the author of the poetry collection Arrow (Alice James Books (U.S.)/Carcanet Press (U.K.), 2020), which received coverage in the New York Times, NPR, and the Guardian. Her first scholarly book, Grave Dangers: Poetics and the Ethics of Death in the Anthropocene, is in progress and under advance contract with the University of Minnesota Press.

Her poetry has appeared in POETRY, The American Poetry Review, Best American Poetry 2019, the Academy of American Poets’ Poem-a-Day, The Rumpus, The Offing, and elsewhere. Her essays most frequently appear in the Los Angeles Review of Books. Her scholarship appears or is forthcoming in Cultural Critique, Interdisciplinary Studies in Literature and the Environment (ISLE), Modernism/modernity, College Literature, and elsewhere.

Sumita is Assistant Professor of English and Creative Writing at North Carolina State University in Raleigh, NC. Previously, she held the positions of Helen Zell Visiting Professor in Poetry at the University of Michigan – Ann Arbor and Visiting Assistant Professor in Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies at Emory University. Her courses have been cross-listed in Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies and Environmental Studies; recent offerings include undergraduate courses such as “Writing in a Time of Extinction,” “Conversations with Dead People,” “The Personal, The Political, and The Poetic,” and “Unruly Feelings,” which are upper-level literary studies seminars, as well as graduate courses on topics such as “Reading Archives: Gaps, Margins, Erasures,” “Poetry and Research,” “On Failure,” and the Thesis Workshop in Poetry.

She is a proud alumna of Wellesley College, where she received her BA, and she received her doctorate in English with a certificate in Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies from Emory. She is the recipient of a Ruth Lilly and Dorothy Sargent Rosenberg Fellowship from the Poetry Foundation, a Kundiman fellow, and has been shortlisted for a Forward Prize for Best Single Poem by the Forward Arts Foundation (UK). Formerly, she was poetry editor of AGNI Magazine and art editor of At Length. Current or more recent editorial work includes reading for the Michigan Review of Prisoner Creative Writing and curating the May 2021 selections for the Academy of American Poets’ Poem-a-Day series, as well as serving on the board of Alice James Books (joined in 2021).

Facilitator:

Matt Donovan is the author of three collections of poetry—The Dug-Up Gun Museum (BOA 2022), Rapture & the Big Bam (Tupelo Press 2017), and Vellum (Mariner 2007)—as well as the book of lyric essays, A Cloud of Unusual Size and Shape: Meditations on Ruin and Redemption (Trinity University Press 2016). Donovan is the recipient of a Whiting Award, a Rome Prize in Literature, a Pushcart Prize, the Levis Reading Prize, and an NEA Fellowship in Literature. In 2017, he received a Creative Capital Grant for Inheritance, a collaborative multimedia chamber opera based on the life of Sarah Winchester. Donovan serves as Director of The Boutelle-Day Poetry Center at Smith College. 


Support The Tell It Slant Poetry Festival and Honor Someone Special:
Admission to all Festival events is free, but online donations, especially those made in honor or memory of family, friends, or colleagues are heartily encouraged and vital to the future of this beloved annual event. All gifts are tax deductible and will be recognized as part of the Festival.


2022 Tell It Slant Poetry Festival Schedule