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December 31, 2020

#Poetry Jericho Brown

by N@ncy



  1. This  book is said to be
  2. …one of the best collection of poems
  3. by a living poet.
  4. Jericho Brown’s poems are works of art and
  5. …they deserve some of my intense reading time.
  6. It took me 2 days to research and read 52 poems.
  7. I learned about Brown’s abusive father and  the poet’s
  8. struggle to be a black gay man.
  9. I hope the notes I provided may
  10. …help you when reading my favorite poems.
  11. #MustRead



  1. 5 Duplex poems are a creation of Jericho Brown (JB).
  2. The structure is unique: the last word of a stanza
  3. ….in the last word on the first next line!
  4. It feels like a puzzel!



  1. Certain poems are inspired by people, books, art.
  2. I needed to read the ‘backstory’ in wikipedia 
  3. …so I  could understand the poems. 
  4. I’ve included links to information regarding these poems.
  5. Favorite: ” After Another Country”  (novel by James Baldwin, 1962)



  1. The title poem is “The Tradition“.
  2. After my first reading I still did not know what it was!
  3. I needed to do some research.
  4. Tradition is: 
  5. joy of gardening,  police violence, remembering victims of police violence.



Part 1:

  • Ganymede – myth about Ganymede   
  • As a Human Being  –  trying to stand up to father…..son-father relationship.
  • The Tradition – see quickscan
  • Hero – trying to impress mother….  son-mother relationship
  • After Another CountryAnother Country main character Rufus Scott 
  • The Water Lilies – image  water lilies = white people
  • Foreday in the Morning – morining glories…mother never sees them, she’s up early to work.
  • The Card Tables – love the personification of simpel ‘card tables’, funny!
  • Bullet Points – Sandra Bland (wikipedia) 
  • Duplex  – abuse-father
  • The Trees – lovely nature poem..the crape myrtle trees
  • A Young Man – father watching teen-age son be a playground guardian for little sister


Part 2:

  • Duplex – abuse-father
  • Riddle – Emmett Till (wikipedia)  – powerful
  • Correspondence – The Jerome Project by Titus Kaphar  
  • Night Shift – painful intimacies of domestic abuse
  • Shovel – vivd poem, no  hidden meaning…just pick up the body and bury it
  • Dear Whiteness – letter to “whiteness” …who the speaker is sleeping with
  • Entertainment Industry – issues of gun control and mass shootings
  • Layover – account of an assault, a pant-like stream-of-consciousness


Part 3:

  • Duplex – abuse-father
  • Of My Fury – love poem
  • The Virus  – HIV
  • Deliverance – remembering childhood Sundays
  • Dark – painfully candid as JB reproaches himself
  • Duplex  – abuse-father
  • Cakewalk – optimism between to old lovers despite HIV
  • Stand – love and pain is inseparable, there is joy to be found  within black bodies
  • Duplex: Cento – abuse-father
Read more from poetry

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