The poet Jericho Brown reminds us to bear witness to the complexity of the human experience, to interrogate the proximity of violence to love, and to look and listen closer so that we might uncover the small truths and surprises in life. His presence is irreverent and magnetic, as the high school students who joined us for this conversation experienced firsthand at the Geraldine R. Dodge Poetry Festival.
Editor’s note: This interview discusses sexual violence and rape.
Jericho Brown is Winship Research Professor in Creative Writing at Emory University and the director of Emory’s creative writing program. He has received fellowships from the Guggenheim Foundation, the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study at Harvard, and the National Endowment for the Arts. His first book, “Please,” won the American Book Award, and his second book, “The New Testament,” won the Anisfield-Wolf Book Award. His new collection of poetry is “The Tradition.”
This interview is edited and produced with music and other features in the On Being episode “Jericho Brown — Small Truths and Other Surprises.” Find more at onbeing.org.