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Friday, November 26, 2021

Alabama’s next poet laureate writes passionately about race

When she started writing Reparations Now! she didn’t know what the title would be yet, but she wrote what she had in mind: the condition to be black in America.

In The Kid Beside Me at The Avengers Got a Toy Gun at 7:00 pm, the boy speaks and pretends to fire his toy gun throughout the film, and his violent behavior is attributed to boys who were boys. The boy “, by the way, is the size of Tamira Rice: alive and will live – and wait, do I need to tell you the color of his skin?”

Other poems such as “She’s Beautiful, She’s Grace,” dedicated to Breonna Taylor, Sandra Bland, Oluwatoin Salau “and so many black girls killed,” talk about how society can deprive black women of their identity and men, but they are also a window in her upbringing in a home where she was taught to be proud of her Blackness.

Growing up in Birmingham, Ms. Jones could not shake the feeling that she needed to move from home to a larger city in order to succeed, so she moved to Miami to pursue her Master of Fine Arts in poetry. She knew that she would miss her family, but she did not expect that she would miss Alabama itself – for the weather, for how life does not speed up, as in big cities, for accents, for food. “Everything.” She returned home in 2015 and has since been writing, teaching and gathering people around poetry.

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“The most important thing I learned while leaving home was that love is a complete word,” she said. “It’s not just, ‘I like this thing, it’s always good for me.’ Love also means understanding what is wrong and a commitment to point it out and try to change what is wrong. This is how I feel about the South. “

Her love for family, Alabama and her people is what allows Miss Jones to praise and criticize her, and why she can say in the same rhythm that Alabama is beautiful and in desperate need of renovation.

Video: Michelle D. Jackson / Black Writers Workspace

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