poet

Gwendolyn Brooks

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Gwendolyn Brooks was born in Topeka, Kansas, on June 7, 1917, and raised in Chicago. She was the author of more than twenty books of poetry, including Children Coming Home (The David Co., 1991); Blacks (The David Co., 1987); To Disembark (Third World Press, 1981); The Near-Johannesburg Boy and Other Poems (The David Co., 1986); Riot (Broadside Press, 1969); In the Mecca (Harper & Row, 1968); The Bean Eaters (Harper, 1960); Annie Allen (Harper, 1949), for which she received the Pulitzer Prize; and A Street in Bronzeville (Harper & Brothers, 1945).

She also wrote numerous other books including a novel, Maud Martha (Harper, 1953), and Report from Part One: An Autobiography (Broadside Press, 1972), and edited Jump Bad: A New Chicago Anthology (Broadside Press, 1971).

In 1968 she was named poet laureate for the state of Illinois. In 1985, she was the first black woman appointed as consultant in poetry to the Library of Congress, a post now known as Poet Laureate. She also received an American Academy of Arts and Letters Award, the Frost Medal, a National Endowment for the Arts Award, the Shelley Memorial Award, and fellowships from the Academy of American Poets and the Guggenheim Foundation. She lived in Chicago until her death on December 3, 2000.


Selected Bibliography

Poetry
Children Coming Home (The David Co., 1991)
Winnie (The David Co., 1988)
Blacks (The David Co., 1987)
The Near-Johannesburg Boy and Other Poems (The David Co., 1986)
To Disembark (Third World Press, 1981)
Beckonings (Broadside Press, 1975)
Aurora (Broadside Press, 1972)
Aloneness (Broadside Press, 1971)
The World of Gwendolyn Brooks (Harper & Row, 1971)
Riot (Broadside Press, 1970)
Family Pictures (Broadside Press, 1970)
In the Mecca (Harper & Row, 1968)
The Wall (Broadside Press, 1967)
We Real Cool (Broadside Press, 1966)
Selected Poems (Harper & Row, 1963)
The Bean Eaters (Harper, 1960)
Bronzeville Boys and Girls (Harper, 1956)
Annie Allen (Harper, 1949)
A Street in Bronzeville (Harper & Brothers, 1945)

Prose
Primer for Blacks (Black Position Press, 1981)
Young Poet’s Primer (Brooks Press, 1981)
A Capsule Course in Black Poetry Writing (Broadside Press, 1975)
Report from Part One: An Autobiography (Broadside Press, 1972)
Maud Martha (Harper, 1953)

 

by this poet

poem

I call for you cultivation of strength in the dark.
Dark gardening
in the vertigo cold.
in the hot paralysis.
Under the wolves and coyotes of particular silences.
Where it is dry.
Where it is dry.
I call for you
cultivation of victory Over
long blows that you want to

poem
	arrive. The Ladies from the Ladies' Betterment
   League
Arrive in the afternoon, the late light slanting
In diluted gold bars across the boulevard brag
Of proud, seamed faces with mercy and murder hinting
Here, there, interrupting, all deep and debonair,
The pink paint on the innocence of fear;
Walk in a
2
poem

(“and the people live till they have white hair”)
E. M. Price

The dry brown coughing beneath their feet,
(Only for a while, for the handyman is on his way)
These people walk their golden gardens.
We say ourselves fortunate to be driving by today.

collected in

collection
A collection of essays and ephemera about several women poets whose li...
collection
This year marks Brooks’s centennial, and to celebrate, we’ve created t...