Evie Shockley

Evie Shockley is the author of two books of poetry—the new black (Wesleyan) and a half-red sea (Carolina Wren Press)—and a book of criticism, Renegade Poetics: Black Aesthetics and Formal Innovation in African American Poetry (Iowa).  She teaches African American literature and creative writing at Rutgers University-New Brunswick.

Three Poems by Evie Shockley

Three Poems by Evie Shockley Three Poems by Evie Shockley

"improphisised," "Mirror and Canvas," "The Farewell Letters"

Nov 5, 2012 / Audio / Evie Shockley

improphised improphised

               1imagine peter, not nodding over his palms that dawn, but praying the vindictive                2prayers of the righteous, drawing enough testosterone up from his balls to light                3all the dew in the garden afire, more than enough to keep him awake, enough                4even to make him slap judas’s silvery lips before they could kiss the sacrifice,                5causing chaos among the spear- bearing romans : imagine him alive with the fury                6of love and utterly blind to the lacerated look on his friend-of-friends’ face, denying                7nothing, not his name, not his faith, not his rage, hurling affirmations at his inquisitors—                8yes, i am the man! : this peter, all flesh and flood, imagine him murderously steadfast,                9less rock than stone, a self- made weapon, still weeping at the cock’s crow, every pre-                10diction re-writing itself anew in his woeful image : human if he did and human if he didn’t.

Nov 2, 2011 / Books & the Arts / Evie Shockley