The New Social Environment#131

Radical Poetry Reading with Patricia Spears Jones

Featuring political poetry read by Ali Black, Michael Broder, Peter Covino, A. Van Jordan, Janice Lowe, and Jade Yeung.


1 p.m. Eastern / 10 a.m. Pacific

Poet Patricia Spears Jones curates the fifth installment of Radical Poetry Readings, featuring Ali Black, Michael Broder, A. Van Jordan, Janice Lowe, and Jade Yeung.

In this talk

Patricia Spears Jones

A photograph of poet Patricia Spears Jones, smiling in front of greenery and wearing a floral print.
Rachel Eliza Griffiths
Arkansas born and raised; resident of New York City for more than four decades, Patricia Spears Jones is the recipient of The Jackson Poetry Prize. She has been a culture maven for four decades. She was the first African American Program Coordinator at The Poetry Project at St. Mark’s Church where she later served as Mentor for Emerge, Surface, Be, a fellowship program. She ran the New Works Program for the Massachusetts Council of Arts & Humanities and was Director of Planning & Development at The New Museum of Contemporary Art. She is active in organizations involved with progressive politics, social justice, feminism, the environment, and multi-culturalism. She curates WORDS SUNDAY, a series focused on Brooklyn-based writers and artists. She has taught at CUNY and Adelphi University.

Ali Black

A black and white photograph of poet Ali Black, wearing a black shirt and looking at the camera.
Photo by Donald Black, Jr.
Ali Black is a writer from Cleveland, Ohio. She directs a literacy-based youth program on Cleveland’s west side. Ali is a current graduate student for poetry at the Northeast Ohio Master of Fine Arts program and she is the poetry editor for Gordon Square Review. She is the recipient of the 2016 Academy of American Poets University & College Poetry Prize for her poem “Kinsman.” Her work has appeared in A Race Anthology: Dispatches and Artifacts From a Segregated City, december, The Rumpus, jubilat, LitHub and The Offing. Her first book of poetry, If It Heals At All, is forthcoming from Jacar Press.

Michael Broder

A photo of poet Michael Broder, wearing a button up and glasses on his head, in front of a field of green grass.
Michael Broder is the author of This Life Now (A Midsummer Night’s Press, 2014), a finalist for the Lambda Literary Award for Gay Poetry. His poems have appeared in numerous publications and anthologies. He holds a BA from Columbia University, an MFA from New York University, and a PhD in Classics from The Graduate Center of the City University of New York. He is the founding publisher of Indolent Books and the creator of the HIV Here & Now Project. Broder lives in Brooklyn with his husband, the poet Jason Schneiderman, and backyard colony of feral cats.

Peter Covino

A portrait of Peter Covino
Photo by Nathalie Handal
After a 15-year career as a social worker in foster care and AIDS services in NYC, poet-editor-translator Peter Covino is now an associate professor of English at the University of Rhode Island. He is the author of collections The Right Place to Jump and Cut Off the Ears of Winter, and co-edited Essays in Italian American Literature. His awards include a NEA Translation Fellowship, the PEN American/Osterweil Award, and Frank O’Hara Prize for his chapbook Straight Boyfriend. He is a Founding Editor of the Ocean State Review and Barrow Street Press. Recent poems and translations appear or are forthcoming at Poem-A-Day, APR, Atelier, Asymptote, Cincinnati Review, Colorado Review, Community RAI Italian Television, Puerto del Sol, Seneca Review, Words without Borders, and Yale Review.

A. Van Jordan

A photo of poet A. Van Jordan, wearing a blue button-up, in front of some bookshelves.
A. Van Jordan is the author of four collections: Rise, which won the PEN/Oakland Josephine Miles Award (Tia Chucha Press, 2001); M-A-C-N-O-L-I-A, (2005), which was listed as one the Best Books of 2005 by the London Times; Quantum Lyrics, (W.W. Norton, 2007); and The Cineaste (W.W. Norton,, 2013). Jordan has been awarded a Whiting Writers Award, an Anisfield-Wolf Book Award, and a Pushcart Prize. He is also the recipient of a John Simon Guggenheim Fellowship, and a United States Artists Fellowship. He is the Henry Rutgers Presidential Professor at Rutgers University-Newark.

Janice Lowe

A photo of poet Janice Lowe
Courtesy of Janice Lowe
Janice A. Lowe, composer-poet, is the author of LEAVING CLE and SWAM. Her musical theater compositions include Somewhere in Texas, text by Charles E. Drew, Jr.; the opera Dusky Alice; Lil Budda, text by Stephanie L. Jones and Sit-In at the Five & Dime, text by Marjorie Duffield. A recent Creative Capital awardee, Lowe composed music for the McKoy Sisters’ Syncopated Sonnets in Song from Tyehimba Jess’ OLIO and has composed music for numerous plays including Liza Jessie Peterson’s Chiron’s Homegurl Healer Howls and 12th and Clairmount by Jenni Lamb. Lowe’s latest album, Songs of Nomadic Dispersal, will be released in November 2020. A co-founder of The Dark Room Collective, Lowe performs and records with her band Janice Lowe & Namaroon.

Jade Yeung

A photo of Jade Yeung, wearing a black and white printed shirt, standing in front of some curtains.
Courtesy Jade Yeung
Jade Yeung was raised in Brooklyn, the daughter of Chinese immigrants. She has received support from Community of Writers and Fine Arts Work Center, and attended workshops at Tin House and VONA. Currently Jade is pursuing an MFA at Rutgers-Newark and is a proud alum of CUNY Hunter.

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