Greetings good people,
Today I'm excited to introduce you all to a writer you know well:
The Distinguished Professor of Twerk Studies and past Muzzle contributor:
Danez Smith, a Cave Canem Fellow and 2-time Pushcart Nominee, works in Madison, WI, as an Student Advisor for the First Wave Program at UW-Madison. He likes tattoos, bad food, drinking Capri Suns, reading manga and good poems. His work appears or is forthcoming in PANK, Anti-, Radius, Southern Indiana Review, and other places. He slams sometimes, placing 6th in the world at the 2011 Individual World Poetry Slam. His One-Man Theatre Production “For Those Who Pray In Closets” is receiving critical acclaim and standing ovations wherever performed. He’s performed his poetry and theatre in the UK, Panama, and all over the USA. When not doing that, Danez enjoys the occasional dance battle with his roommate. He thinks you look good today.
Over this next month Danez is going to introduce or reintroduce you to 30 poets under 30 that you should be checking for.
Here's an introduction in Danez's own words:
"My generation has been so consistently played down as lazy, facebooking, science & math intolerant (that one might be true for me, Chemistry makes me gassy), lexicon-lite Nintendo babies. We, children of Nicktoons & Puff Daddy name changes, have so much yet to prove, so much more work to do before we know what name to call us by throughout history, but damn if we aren’t werking it already. I am consistently in a state of awe and whimsy over the work being produced by artist in my generation. We - who follow in the freshly pressed & still marching footsteps of the Dark Room Collective, Rachel McKibbens, Roger Bonair-Agard and the like – are a fierce little bunch of bebe’s kids if you ask me. I am always stunned by the brave lyrics and soft, cutting verse coming out from people I have the honor to call peers. I find myself with my mouth ajar and my hand paused mid air, asking myself ‘Did this fool just write this brilliance? How they only 26 and don got a pen mightier than a megazord?’ In honor of these amazing, emerging lights, I’m dedicating my National Poetry Month to them. Instead of writing poems in the 30/30, I’m going to be singing the names of 30 writers under 30 who you need to get into. Coming up with 30 was hard, not because there weren't enough, but because there are too many, but take these 30 as a simple sampling of the great Young Country Buffet of young writers today. They will change your life 1 stanza at a time, they will save your soul on a line break. These 30 artists are all that and a bag of chips, maybe even the whole corner store!"
Welcome to a 30 Day Challenge Muzzle-style.
Assistant Poetry Editor