The Collection Plate: Poems


Product Details

$26.99  $25.10
Ecco Press
Publish Date
7.5 X 9.3 X 0.5 inches | 0.7 pounds

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About the Author

Kendra Allen was born and raised in Dallas, Texas. She is the author of The Collection Plate and When You Learn the Alphabet, and writes the music column "Make Love in My Car" for Southwest Review. In her spare time, she loves laughing and leaving. You can keep up with her work at


"The Collection Plate is as close as we can get to those looming Black spaces beyond and before language. A book shouldn't be able to do this but Kendra Allen is a conjurer as much as she is one of the most complete writers we have ever read." --Kiese Laymon, author of Heavy and Long Division
"Kendra Allen's Collection Plate is formally and linguistically invigorating, intertwining and juxtaposing personal and cultural histories to take the reader on a vivid emotional exploration. Allen considers Black exploitation, water crises, white feminism, and the notion of equality, among other failures in and of America. . . . Allen is in command of Our Father's, and other deadly forces', presence in her narratives, which she often wields with searing humor. This is a valuable offering; Collection Plate brings to light the dismantling capacity of laughing in the face of power, while directly examining it with eyes fired open." --Emily Jungmin Yoon, author of A Cruelty Special to Our Species
A spectacular debut poetry collection . . . marks the arrival of a singular new talent, a poet whose lyricism is artfully matched by the depths of the emotions she conveys. Allen's poems explore themes of Blackness, womanhood, sex, desire, pain, and belonging, offering glimpses of the casual cruelty and sublime beauty that swim just under the surface of all our experiences."--Refinery 29
"The Collection Plate introduces Kendra Allen as a poet to watch. . . . Allen shines a light on the spaces that connect and divide us, coalescing into an electric portrait of joy and pain."--Time
Kendra Allen's poems examine how religion and hierarchy inform the spaces Black women and girls inhabit--and how we blow past those boundaries, swimming toward the horizon even as the undertow threatens to pull us in another direction.--Essence
"These poems blend personal narrative with social commentary to explore the joy, pain, and underrepresented voices of Black womanhood in America. It's a passionate, fresh, and deeply southern collection that introduces a new voice you won't want to miss."--Book Riot