Follow Harriet on Twitter
Lucille Clifton Exhibition at Emory
Treasures from the archive of the late poet Lucille Clifton, including rare unpublished poems and some of her earliest children’s books, will be featured in upcoming exhibits from the Manuscript, Archives, and Rare Book Library (MARBL) at Emory University.
The first exhibit, titled “come celebrate with me: The Work of Lucille Clifton,” opens Aug. 28 in the MARBL Gallery on Level 10 of the Robert W. Woodruff Library. Curated by Amy Hildreth Chen and Kevin Young, it features poems—from the first she ever wrote in the 1950s to her last in 2010—limited edition books and previously unseen photographs, from Clifton’s childhood to her National Book Award win in 2000.
The exhibit coincides with the release of “The Collected Poems of Lucille Clifton 1965-2010,” co-edited by Young, a poet and professor of English and creative writing at Emory as well as curator of literary collections and the Raymond Danowski Poetry Library at MARBL. The book contains more than 700 pages of Clifton’s poems, including 62 unpublished poems — 27 from her early years of writing, 35 from her later years until her death two years ago. The poems were found in Clifton’s papers, which MARBL acquired in 2006 and added to after her passing.
The Buffalo, N.Y., native, whose first book of poetry was published in 1969, is best known for her distinctive lowercase style and poems such as “homage to my hips” and “won’t you celebrate with me.” Her powerful, pared-down poems describe her experience as an African American woman in the 20th century, some told simply yet profoundly, others with earthy humor. She became well known through her appearances on television shows such as “Nightline” and Bill Moyers’ “The Power of the Word.” Her writing has been published in more than 100 poetry anthologies.
More here. Also, on the sidebar after the jump, note the Decatur Book Festival event featuring Kevin Young, co-editor of The Collected Poems of Lucille Clifton: 1965-2010.