Hosted by F. Douglas Brown and Featuring
t’ai freedom ford, Luivette Resto,
and Angela Peñaredondo
t’ai freedom ford is a New York City high school English teacher. Her poetry, fiction, and essays have appeared in Apogee, Bomb Magazine, Calyx, Drunken Boat, Electric Literature, Gulf Coast, Kweli, Tin House, Poetry and others. Her poetry has been anthologized in A Body of Athletics edited by Natalie Diaz, The Break Beat Poets: New American Poetry in the Age of Hip-Hop, and Nepantla: An Anthology of Queer Poets of Color, and others. t’ai has received awards and fellowships from Cave Canem, Camargo Foundation, The Center for Fiction, Community of Literary Magazines and Presses, Kimbilio, and The Poetry Project. A 2019 Jerome Hill Artist Fellowship inaugural fellow, she is the author of two poetry collections, how to get over from Red Hen Press and & more black from Augury Books, winner of the 2020 Lambda Literary Award for Lesbian Poetry. t’ai lives and loves in Brooklyn where she is an editor at No, Dear Magazine.
Of & more black poet Terrance Hayes notes: “& more black is full of “dance floor long division,” Hello Kitty lunchboxes, double-dutch, and “dyke dowry.” “we be makeshift / bodies got too many mouths” t’ai freedom ford writes in these propulsive, poly-vocal, poly-verbal gems. This is a book holding spectacular spells, songs and instructions for freedom.” Poet Patrick Rosal offers, “These poems suffer none of the ongoing American foolishness. They snap so hard you might—as I did—jump up and run out of the room laughing at their brilliant, slicing wit.”
Angela Peñaredondo (they/them, she/her) is a queer, nonbinary femme, Filipinx interdisciplinary writer-artist-educator. Angela is the author of the chapbook Maroon (Jamii Publications) and All Things Lose Thousands of Times (Inlandia Institute). Angela is an Assistant Professor of Creative Writing and Digital Humanities at California State University San Bernardino. Angela believes in bridging creative writing studies with feminist of color and queer pedagogical practices rooted in critical race, social and transformative justice. Currently, they live in Alhambra, California, unceded Gabrielino-Tongva land. Their upcoming book, a hybrid of poetry, short lyrical essay, and flash memoir will be coming out in Noemi Press, 2023.
Of All Things Lose Thousands of Times, poet Carmen Giménez Smith, notes:“The poems in All Things Lose Thousands of Timesaptly tell a transnational coming of age story, a becoming from the savage and the fertile, the urban and the fantastic, where “heaven comes after collision.” This is a stunning debut for Penaredondo, poems that shimmer with dense and riveting lyricism.”
Luivette Resto, a mother, teacher, poet, and Wonder Woman fanatic, was born in Aguas Buenas, Puerto Rico but proudly raised in The Bronx. Her two books of poetry Unfinished Portrait and Ascension have been published by Tía Chucha Press. Some of her latest work can be found in the anthology titled What Saves Us: Poems of Empathy and Outrage in the Age of Trump edited by Martín Espada and on the University of Arizona’s Poetry Center website. She is the Executive Editor of Angels Flight Literary West Magazine. She lives in the San Gabriel Valley with her three children aka her revolutionaries.
Of Ascension, Barbara Jane Reyes notes: “In Luivette Resto’s Ascension, our speaker is an unflinching witness and an exposed nerve. ‘Slut, murderer, mother,’ she carries betrayal, heartbreak, and hope. She mines the everyday, the ‘pedestrian or exquisite,’ for all its possibility. In paean, in dirge, in sonnet, she invokes Wonder Woman, and Puerto Rican Obituary. Without hesitation, she calls out misogynist colleagues, two-timing lovers. Personal and political, these are poems of defiance, affirmation, material and spiritual survival.”
F. DOUGLAS BROWN is the author of two poetry collections, ICON (Writ Large Press, 2018), and Zero to Three (University of Georgia, 2014), winner of the 2013 Cave Canem Poetry Prize selected by US Poet Laureate, Tracy K. Smith. Brown, an educator for over 25 years, currently teaches English and African American Poetry at Loyola High School of Los Angeles, and is both a Cave Canem and Kundiman fellow. He is the co-founder and co-curator of un::fade::able – The Requiem for Sandra Bland, a quarterly reading series examining restorative justice through poetry as a means to address racism. When he is not teaching, writing or with his children (Isaiah, Olivia, and Simone), he is busy DJing in the greater Los Angeles area.