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Pop-up: Danez Smith

Sat, Nov 11, 2017 from 1:15 pm - 1:30 pm PST

Danez Smith reads from his poetry collection Don’t Call Us Dead in the Portland Art Museum galleries.

Smith is paired with Moment of Silence by Hans Burkhardt; found in the Modern & Contemporary Art wing, floor 1, gallery 113. Please reference the Portland Art Museum Map to find this location.


Award-winning poet Danez Smith is a groundbreaking force, celebrated for deft lyrics, urgent subjects, and performative power. Don’t Call Us Dead opens with a heartrending sequence that imagines an afterlife for black men shot by police, a place where suspicion, violence, and grief are forgotten and replaced with the safety, love, and longevity they deserved here on earth. Smith turns then to desire, mortality—the dangers experienced in skin, body, and blood—and a diagnosis of HIV positive. “some of us are killed / in pieces,” Smith writes, “some of us all at once.” Don’t Call Us Dead is an astonishing collection, one that confronts America where every day is too often a funeral and not often enough a miracle. 

Danez Smith

Recipient of a 2017 NEA Award, Danez Smith is a Black, queer, poz writer, and performer from St. Paul, MN. Danez is the author of [insert] boy (YesYes Books, 2014), winner of the Kate Tufts Discovery Award and the Lambda Literary Award for Gay Poetry, and Don’t Call Us Dead (Graywolf Press, 2017). Danez is also the author of two chapbooks, hands on your knees (2013, Penmanship Books) and black movie (2015, Button Poetry), winner of the Button Poetry Prize. They are the recipient of fellowships from the Poetry Foundation, the McKnight Foundation, and is a 2017 National Endowment for the Arts Fellow. Danez’s work has been featured widely, including on Buzzfeed, Blavity, PBS NewsHour, and on the Late Show with Stephen Colbert. They are a 2-time Individual World Poetry Slam finalist, 3-time Rustbelt Poetry Slam Champion, and a founding member of the Dark Noise Collective. Danez is represented by Beotis Creative. Also appearing in:

Live Wire with Luke Burbank

Date: Sunday, Nov 12 Venue: Mississippi Studios Doors: 10:00am / Show: 11:00am

w/ Ed Asner + Edan Lepucki + Danez Smith + Chad VanGaalen

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