Danez Smith

Johanna Lawshea

Danez Smith is a proud Cave Canem Fellow, two-time Pushcart Nominee, Best New Poets Nominee, survivor and an avid twerker. He thinks you look good today. Danez started writing because of slams and necessity. He placed 6th in the world at the 2011 Individual World Poetry Slam and is the 2013 Rustbelt Midwest Regional Slam Champion. He is the author of hands on ya knees, a chapbook. His writing has appeared in Gertrude, Devil’s Lake, PANK, the Cortland Review, Anti-, and elsewhere. Smith is an assistant editor for Muzzle magazine. Smith’s first full-length collection of poetry is [insert] boy (Yes Yes Books). Gabrielle Calvocoressi, Poetry Editor for the LA Review of Books, writes, “The next time someone tells you spoken word poets can’t make poems come to life on the page, send them to Danez Smith’s [insert] boy, a remarkable debut collection that puts that tired notion to bed once and for all…these poems interrogate the ways the body not only inhabits but actually becomes public and private space… Danez Smith lays down the gauntlet for all of us to speak our deepest truths with more elegance, more ferocity, and almost more beauty than a reader can bear.”