AT&T Recognizes the Poem Black Dandelion, and A New Multimedia Youth Platform Is Born
The Academy of American Poets Fellow, Semaj Brown Always Seeks to Educate the Youth
By: Pamela R. Purifoy, PRPro Media
The Academy of American Poets distributed a video of poet laureate fellow, Semaj Brown reading her poem, Black Dandelion to middle and high school students. The poet laureate received letters from youth from across the United States and world via the Dear Poet project. The letters represented a range of ethnicities, Asian, Armenian, Black, White, and more. Exchanges can be read on the Dear Semaj Brown page https://poets.org/
Deeply moved, Semaj Brown states, "The Black Dandelion poem serves as a global hot air balloon. It rises like helium above the terror of social injustices, holding a safe space for youth to interpret, and address historical, traumatic realities. The students' thoughts and feelings expressed in the letters formed a "convergent voice" with the Black Dandelion. They were deeply disturbed by inflicted injustices yet enthusiastically embraced hopeful resilience, the spirit of the weed."
The narrative voice of the poem is a four-year old little Black girl who recollects the turmoil of the Civil Rights era. She associates discrimination and the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. with the "mow down" of dandelions her beloved flowers.
Black Dandelion: Convergent Voice, a Multimedia Youth platform will officially launch October 14, 2022 at the Michigan Council of Teachers of English Centennial Conference ---Semaj Brown as Lunch Speaker presents, Poetry as a 2nd Language: Passcode to Literacy through the Semajian Method.
Black Dandelion poem was first published by Chapel Hill Press, 2020 and was also expressed as an art video for The "New" McCree Theater Youth Poetry Explosion.
About Semaj Brown: She is an award-winning educator, author, and Flint, Michigan's Inaugural Poet Laureate. The creator of the award-winning literary and literacy civic initiative, The Poetry Pod Project (P3). Brown became an Academy of American Poets Poets Laureate Fellow in 2021. To learn more visit: www.SemajBrown.com