Growing the Garden: Paying Tribute to Joanne Gabbin and Furious Flower
Saturday, March 11, 2023
10:35 am to 11:50 am
Envisioned by Dr. Joanne Gabbin, the historic Furious Flower Poetry Conference was organized at James Madison University in 1994 and led to the development of the nation’s first academic center for Black poetry. Furious Flower has become a singular institution, supporting the growth of new poets and archiving the work of torchbearers in the Black literary tradition. Gabbin, a veteran educator who pioneered courses in Black Studies, is also an editor, author, poet advocate, culture-worker, and community builder.
Remica Bingham-Risher is a Cave Canem fellow and Affrilachian Poet. Her most recent books are Starlight & Error and Soul Culture: Black Poets, Books and Questions that Grew Me Up. She is Director of Quality Enhancement Plan Initiatives at Old Dominion University.
Shauna M. Morgan is associate professor of creative writing and Africana literature at the University of Kentucky; she serves as editor of the College Language Association Journal. Her scholarship and poetry focus on the continuum of decoloniality and possibility in ecosystems of Black life.
Tyehimba Jess' Olio won the Pulitzer Prize, Anisfield-Wolf, Society of Midland Authors Poetry Award, and recognition from the BCALA. His first book, Leadbelly, won the National Poetry Series. A NEA, Whiting, Guggenheim, and Lannan Foundation Award winner, he teaches at College of Staten Island.
Jericho Brown celebrates his latest book, The Tradition, at this year's AWP. A Guggenheim fellow and the director of the creative writing program at Emory University, he also wrote Please and The New Testament. His poems have appeared in the New York Times, The New Yorker, and Time.
Opal Moore, poet and writer, is a founding member of the Furious Flower advisory board and former board chair. Author of Lot's Daughters, she is a fiction editor for Obsidian literary journal and poetry editor for The Art Section, an online commentary on contemporary art.