Being Black in America, Caribbean American Poet Lauren K Alleyne, Killing of Blacks in America, Poem "Horror Too Has a Heartbeat" by Lauren K Alleyne, Poetry Collection Honeyfish by Lauren K Alleyne (UK 2019), Trinidad & Tobago/Caribbean, White aggression/oppression in America
My Poetry Corner May 2023 features the poem “Horror, Too, Has a Heartbeat” from the poetry collection Honeyfish by Lauren K. Alleyne, first published by Peepal Tree Press (UK, 2019). Born in the twin-island nation of Trinidad and Tobago, the poet arrived in the USA at eighteen years old after receiving a scholarship from St. Francis College in New York City, where she earned a Bachelor of Arts in English. She also earned a Masters Degree in English and Creative Writing from Iowa State University (2002) and a Master of Fine Arts Degree in Poetry from Cornell University (2006).
In 2022, the State Council of Higher Education for Virginia recognized Alleyne with an Outstanding Faculty Award for her work at James Madison University, where she serves as a professor of English and executive director of the Furious Flower Poetry Center. She currently resides in Harrisonburg, Virginia.
Honeyfish, her second collection of poetry, won the 2018 New Issues Press Green Rose Prize sponsored by Western Michigan University. In the first of three untitled sections of the collection, the poet-persona bears witness to the relentless horror of white oppression and murder of black bodies: Aaron Campbell (Oregon, 2010), Trayvon Martin (Florida, 2012), Tamir Rice (Ohio, 2014), Sandra Bland (Texas, 2015), Charleston mass shootings (South Carolina, 2015), and Charlottesville white supremacist protest (Virginia, 2017). In contrast to such violence, the elegies and poems of remembrance hold no malice. Instead, we experience the tender and painful images of the innocent lost.Continue reading