Telling the Hard Truths w. MORGAN PARKER

Author photo by Rachel Eliza Griffiths.

Author photo by Rachel Eliza Griffiths.

Morgan Parker

Morgan Parker is the author of the poetry collections Magical Negro, There Are More Beautiful Things Than Beyoncé, and Other People’s Comfort Keeps Me Up At Night. Her debut YA novel Who Put This Song On? will be published in Fall 2019 from Delacorte Press, and her debut book of nonfiction is forthcoming from One World/Random House. Parker is the recipient of a 2017 National Endowment for the Arts Literature Fellowship, winner of a Pushcart Prize, and a Cave Canem graduate fellow. She is the creator and host of Reparations, Live! at the Ace Hotel. With Tommy Pico, she co-curates the Poets with Attitude (PWA) reading series, and with Angel Nafis, she is The Other Black Girl Collective. She lives in Los Angeles.

Discussed In This Episode

Black excellence. Intentional repetition. Reading until the audience gets it. Not believing in time, and understanding the present as a layered experience. Bodily memory. “This is like a really crazy party.” Zora Neale Hurston. Writing and documentation. Poetry as ethnography. Ralph Ellison. Langston Hughes. Glenn Ligon. “How do I want to play with this idea?” Putting your ego aside. Totems driving you through the text. It’s so hard to tell the truth. “Where does the reader need to breathe, and where do I not care if they get a chance to breathe?” Representation, and misrepresentation. “Negro sunshine.”

Bonus Segment

Morgan talks about why visual art is so critical to her creative process and discusses the artists who inspire her most.

Bonus segments are a Patreon exclusive. Join here.

Recommended Reading

Magical Negro, Morgan Parker
“BYO Canon (and Other New Year’s Resolutions),” Morgan Parker
”Slippery and Dark and Brilliant: A Conversation with Morgan Parker,” Naya Clark
In the Wake, Christina Sharpe

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