Tyehimba Jess & Harmony Holiday

Thursday, November 7, 2019
7:00 - 10:00 PM
Forager Tasting Room & Eatery
420 S. 1st Street
San José, CA, 95172
(See map below)

General Admission: Free


On November 7, the Center for Literary Arts of San José will present Tyehimba Jess and Harmony Holiday at Forager for a night of performance poetry and conversation with Tshaka Campbell. Copies of Jess and Holiday’s latest poetry collections will be available for purchase, and a book-signing opportunity will follow the performance. This event is free and open to the public.

Olio is a book of poetry written by Tyehimba Jess that was released in 2016. The book is split into 16 sections, 14 of which are poems with the introduction section and extras and acknowledgments acting as the beginning and ending sections. The book won the 2017 Pulitzer Prize for Poetry. Signed copies of Olio are available in the CLA's bookstore.


Championing the tenderest of homicidal tendencies, a penchant for mercy killings and redemptive rites of passage, A Jazz Funeral for Uncle Tom is exactly what it announces it is, a book as dynamic and eternal event wherein a feminine voice leads her band of improvisers in a procession of joyous interrogation and forgiveness. Signed copies of A Jazz Funeral for Uncle Tom are available in the CLA's bookstore.


Tyehimba Jess is the author of two books of poetry, Leadbelly and OlioOlio won the 2017 Pulitzer Prize, the Anisfield-Wolf Book Award, The Midland Society Author’s Award in Poetry, and received an Outstanding Contribution to Publishing Citation from the Black Caucus of the American Library Association. It was also nominated for the National Book Critics Circle Award, the PEN Jean Stein Book Award, and the Kingsley Tufts Poetry Award. Leadbelly was a winner of the 2004 National Poetry Series. The Library Journal and Black Issues Book Review both named it one of the “Best Poetry Books of 2005.”

Harmony Holiday is the author of Negro League Baseball (2011), winner of the Fence Books Motherwell Prize; Go Find your Father/A Famous Blues (Ricochet Editions, 2013), a “dos-a-dos” book featuring poetry, letters, and essays; and Hollywood Forever (Fence Books, 2017), which she is turning into an afroballet. She is currently working on a biography of Abbey Lincoln and an epic called M a a f A (2019), an exploration of reparations and the body. In 2013 she was awarded a Ruth Lilly Fellowship from the Poetry Foundation.

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Originally from England, Tshaka moved to the United States when he was 10. Performance accolades include being a member of the 2004 Nuyorican Poetry National Poetry Slam Team and the 2006 Hollywood National Champion Slam Poetry team. He also earned the Grand Champion title at the 2005 San Francisco Championship and the 2007 Hollywood Championship. Tshaka has toured internationally and has been featured at theaters from the legendary Apollo Theatre in New York to the O2 arena in London. He also conducts lectures and workshops in creative writing. Tshaka has authored three books entitled Tarman, Muted Whispers, and Tunnel Vision. He has 3 albums. His most recent release, Skin Vol. 1, is currently available for download. Tshaka has collaborated on a number of musical projects, including national commercials.

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