Enjoy these Own Voices poets in honor of National Poetry month, we will be highlighting two great up-in-coming poets in this era: Jasmine Mans & Nikita Gill.
Jasmine Mans is a Black American from New Jersey who graduated from the University of Wisconsin Madison with a BA in African American Studies. She published her debut collection of poetry in 2012, Chalk Outlines of Snow Angels. Jasmine is a spoken word poet who touches on topics such as feminism, race, and queer identity. In this collection she talks about her path to adulthood as a young, queer Black woman, but she also dives into being a black woman in America and a Black woman in her hometown of Newark, New Jersey. More importantly, she's calling you home. She's calling every Black girl, every Brown girl home.
Nikita Gill is a British Indian poet who graduated with a master's at the University for the Creative Arts. She was first published at the age of twelve after being rejected 137 times. She currently has five volumes of poetry. Her work offers a beautiful re-telling with a fresh perspective and reflection on feminism, love, and empowerment through her love of fairytales and mythology. This book is a novel in verse allowing for a more personable way to get to know your characters and really dive into their emotions. Nikita wanted to open a door for characters that were not present while she was growing up. She talks a lot about toxic positivity, embracing your sexuality, and acceptance.
#OwnVoices at Richland Library is a way for African American staff to provide thoughtful and well written book reviews, book lists and blog posts to promote African American authors and their work about the African American experience. The series invites our customers to learn one more way we are continuing the conversation in our community and speaking our voice. Find more resources on race, equity and inclusion, here.