Fri, February 17, 20177:00 PM
Famed Poet Returns to Tonkawa
Award-winning author Quraysh “Poet Q” Ali Lansana will return to Tonkawa Feb. 17 for a book and poetry reading at Northern Oklahoma College Tonkawa and creative writing workshops at Tonkawa Elementary School and Blackwell High School.
The public is invited to the poetry reading beginning at 7 p.m. in the Eleanor Hays Art Gallery, located in the Kinzer Performing Arts Center. Admission is free, and a reception will follow the reading. The poet will have copies of his latest works available. Attendees can also view “Creators 2017,” the biennial NOC faculty art and literature exhibit.
Lansana plans to read A Gift from Greensboro, an autobiographical book set in North Carolina but most of which happened in Enid. He will also read “a handful of newish poems and an essay or two about Miss Gwendolyn Brooks, the first Black person to receive the Pulitzer Prize (in 1950) for poetry.” Lansana is Brooks’ last protégé/student.
Lansana is the author of eight poetry books, three textbooks, three children's books, editor of eight anthologies and coauthor of a book of pedagogy. He is a faculty member of the Writing Program of the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and a former faculty member of the Drama Division of The Juilliard School.
He served as Director of the Gwendolyn Brooks Center for Black Literature and Creative Writing at Chicago State University from 2002-2011, where he was also Associate Professor of English/Creative Writing until 2014. Our Difficult Sunlight: A Guide to Poetry, Literacy & Social Justice in Classroom & Community, published in 2011, was a 2012 NAACP Image Award nominee.
His most recent books include The Whiskey of Our Discontent: Gwendolyn Brooks as Conscience & Change Agent; Revise the Psalm: Work Celebrating the Writings of Gwendolyn Brooks); The BreakBeat Poets: New American Poetry in the Age of Hip Hop and The Walmart Republic. Forthcoming titles include Clara Luper: The Woman Who Rallied the Children.