Danez Smith: Don't Call Us Dead

Award-winning poet Danez Smith is celebrated for deft lines, urgent subjects, and performative power. Don’t Call Us Dead opens with a heartrending sequence that imagines an afterlife for black men shot by police—suspicion, violence, and grief are forgotten, replaced with the safety, love, and longevity they deserved here on earth. Smith writes about desire, mortality—the dangers experienced in skin and body and blood—and an HIV-positive diagnosis. Smith confronts, praises, and rebukes America, where every day is too often a funeral and too rarely a miracle. University of Chicago sociologist, poet, artist, and educator Eve L. Ewing joins Danez in conversation.

This program is presented in partnership with Gallery Guichard and the Poetry Foundation.