“Black Fire: This Time” | A Reading

Black Fire: This Time, Volume 1 from Willow Books (a division of Aquarius Press) celebrates the roots and legacy of the Black Arts Movement featuring the works of over 100 poets and writers. Published last spring, perfectly captures the spirit of sankofa, a word from the Akan people of Ghana that roughly translates to “it is not taboo to fetch what is at riskof being left behind.” Black Fire This Time serves up generous portions of essays and plays, but poetry is the main entrée. The Aquarius Press anthology pays tribute to Black Fire, a 1968 anthology edited by Amiri Baraka and Larry Neal that signaled the beginning of the Black Power movement in America and amplifies the new sentiment “Black is Beautiful. Black is Powerful. Black is Home.” “In 20 years or so when future anthologists produce an anthology that will reflect a future state of Black writing,” literary icon Ishmael Reed writes in the volume’s introduction, “they will find this one hard to surpass.” This reading will feature some local contributors from the book, including Curtis L. Crisler, Charlois Lumpkin, aka Mali Newman, Halima J. Olufemi, and Katrina Washington, along with special guests Michael Warr and Tongo Eisen-Martin.