R219. The Black Jazz Poetic in the 21st Century: Ancient to the Future?

Room 411, LA Convention Center, Meeting Room Level
Thursday, March 31, 2016
1:30 pm to 2:45 pm


As jazz approaches its centennial, a multigenerational panel of Black poets analyzes how its influence has shaped their understanding of craft and what that influence will look and sound like in the 21st century. In an age where jazz has been reported to be Americans' least favorite music genre, how do younger Black poets access a jazz aesthetic to reclaim, reimagine, and regenerate it for themselves? How do mid-career poets relate and regenerate a jazz aesthetic in their practice and praxis?



Tyehimba Jess is author of leadbelly, 2004 winner of the National Poetry Series. A Cave Canem, NEA, and Lannan Foundation Fellow, he also received a Whiting Writers Award. His second book, Olio, is forthcoming. He teaches at College of Staten Island.

Duriel E. Harris is the author of Amnesiac, Speleology, with artist Scott Rankin, and Thingification, a verse-based solo play with music. Editor of Obsidian: Literature in the African Diaspora and cofounder of the Black Took Collective, she is an associate professor of English at ISU in Normal, IL.


Geoffrey Jacques is a poet, essayist, critic, and editor. His poems and essays can be found in Askew, NKA Journal of Contemporary African Art, Tidal Basin Review, Black Renaissance Noire, Miramar, and elsewhere. His most recent books include the poetry collection Just for a Thrill.

Harmony Holiday is the author of Negro League Baseball, winner of the Motherwell Poetry Prize. She has a BA from University of California, Berkeley and an MFA from Columbia University, and she runs a boutique production house devoted to the crossing between archiving, improvisation, myth, and black music.

A.H. Jerriod Avant is a graduate of Jackson State University. He's earned MFA degrees from Spalding University and New York University, where he was a Writers’ in the Public Schools Fellow. He's received fellowships and residencies from Poets & Writers, Vermont Studio Center, & Provincetown FAWC.


March 4–7, 2020
San Antonio, TX

Henry B. González Convention Center