Skin, Inc.: Identity Repair Poems
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About the Author
Thomas Sayers Ellis is a poet and photographer. He is the author of a previous poetry book, The Maverick Room, and teaches at Sarah Lawrence College and in the low-residency program at Lesley University. He lives in Brooklyn.
"Thomas Sayers Ellis is one of the most gifted poets of his generation and more. He reminds me of the ancient Greek bards who found poetic and theatrical vehicles to comment on contemporary politics and society-those great intellectuals and artists Athenians turned to when they wanted something closer to the truth than the official story. In this brilliant and penetrating collection, Ellis throws himself into the role of political bard, a voice of challenge and reason and utopia and warning in the age of Obama. Skin, Inc., is about repair and reflection, it's about coming to terms with history so we can move forward, not to a postracial future but an antiracist and ultimately postracist society. But he is less interested in recounting our histories of oppressions than in our creative capacity, the black roots of a unique prosody, and the power of poetry and the poet to speak to beauty, grace, perseverance, in the face of violence, enslavement, commodification.
Ellis has something to say about the moment we're in, and he is that rare breed of Poet, the kind whose works will be studied for generations to come, whose name will be uttered alongside that other great T. S." --Robin D. G. Kelley, author of Thelonious Monk: The Life and Times of an American Original