In this new collection of poems, University of Mississippi's 2018 Summer Poet in Residence DéLana R. A. Dameron maps a journey across emotional, spiritual, and geographic lines, from the familiarity of the honeysuckle South to a new world, or a new kingdom—Harlem. Her poems traverse the streets of this Black mecca with a careful eye cast toward the intimacies of the exterior. Still, as the poems move throughout the built environment, they navigate matters of death, love, love loss, and family against the backdrop of a city that has yet to become home. Indeed what looms over this weary kingdom is a longing for the certainties of a lover's touch, the summer's sun, and the comforts of a promised land up North. And as the poet longs, so do readers. Ultimately they grow aware of Utopia's fragility.
About the Author
A native of Columbia, South Carolina, DéLana R. A. Dameron is a writer and an arts and culture administrator living in Brooklyn, New York. Dameron's debut collection, How God Ends Us (University of South Carolina Press), was selected by Elizabeth Alexander for the 2008 South Carolina Poetry Book Prize. Dameron holds an M.F.A. in poetry from New York University and a B.A. in history from the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill. She has conducted readings, workshops, and lectures across the United States, Central America, and Europe.