Poetry. African & African American Studies. These poems challenge the notion of "home" for persons of African descent born outside the continent. Closely attentive to form and content, narrative and emotion, history and the contemporary, they tell stories that are little known—the lives of persons of African descent at different periods in the Americas. It is Smith's voice that counts here, and the techniques he uses, akin to those of jazz. His stories say much about our times and their foundations, recreating figures such as Marie Josephe Angelique, Viola Desmond, John Brown, Maryann Shadd, and Mumia. The weaving between sections, and the forms used expose the transhistorical so that each particular narrative is linked to a more telling composition.
Charles C Smith teaches Cultural Pluralism in the Arts at the University of Toronto Scarborough. His poetry has been published in numerous places, and his work is included in two forthcoming anthologies, Black Canadian Poetry (Frontenac House) and Men in the Company of Women (Edgar and Lenore's Publishing House, San Francisco).