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in Gilliam’s
After Glow palette
flashes of the middle passage

— Crystal Simone Smith, responding to Sam Gilliam’s After Glow


we play hide-and-seek
among the hollyhocks

—L. Teresa Church, responding to Norman Lewis’s Afternoon

Haiku Inspiration

Five haiku poets of the Carolina African American Writers’ Collective found inspiration in the exhibition Solidary & Solitary: The Joyner/Giuffrida Collection. On the evening of February 22, 2018, they read haiku poetry inside a gallery in response to works of art on view, and they also read from the new book of haiku poetry they co-authored, One Window’s Light (2017, Unicorn Press).

Members of the Carolina African American Writers’ Collective include Gideon Young, whose poetry has appeared in Modern Haiku and Obsidian, among other publications; Sheila Smith McKoy, Ph.D., author and professor of English at Kennesaw State University; Lenard D. Moore, who received the Haiku Museum of Tokyo Award (1983, 1994 and 2003) and the North Carolina Award for Literature (2014); L. Teresa Church, Ph.D., whose work has appeared in Simply Haiku and The Heron’s Nest, among other publications; and Crystal Simone Smith, author and assistant professor of English at Elon University, managing editor of Backbone Press.


museumed slave manacle
the rain
still falling

—Gideon Young, responding to Melvin Edwards's 1991


springtime painting:
a black woman’s bare back
in the red dress

—Lenard D. Moore, responding to Lynette Yiadom-Boakye’s Places to Love For


a stranger
too close to my secret garden
lost in his thoughts

—Sheila Smith McKoy, responding to A Private Stranger Thinking about His Needs


four empty housedresses
full of quiet light
16th Street spirits

—Gideon Young, responding to Kevin Beasley's Untitled (Vine)


aged inmates
on the prison bus—

—L. Teresa Church, responding to Mark Bradford’s No Time to Expand the Sea


sidewalk flowers
admitting I miss
Easter Sundays

— Crystal Simone Smith, responding to Norman Lewis’s Afternoon


blackened wood
engulfs scattered oak roots—
still this crossroad

—Lenard D. Moore, responding to Leonardo Drew’s sculpture, Number 52S


Cape Town afternoon
pink and yellow butterflies
rhythmic wings

—Sheila Smith McKoy, responding to Norman Lewis’s Afternoon

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