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Festive Season Orders from Animal Heart Press

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It's that time of year, wildlings!
If you're looking for something from Animal Heart Press's catalogue of books this festive season, we'll do our best to have it in your hands on time. Delivery windows are closing quickly, especially for international deliveries. If you'd like your order guaranteed by December 24th, please contact us before you order and we'll be in touch!

Featured Artist Khalisa Rae - Slam Poet!

Wildlings, on her final day as Featured Artist, Khalisa Rae leaves us on a triumphant note - with two brilliant slam poetry performances. Enjoy!


khalisa rae from Encore Magazine on Vimeo.
And take a listen here as Khalisa performs a poem on WHQR Communique.

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Page Poetry To Stage Poetry With Khalisa Rae

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Wildlings, Featured Artist Khalisa Rae is an exceptional performance poet, so on your behalf (and ours!) we asked her for some tips! Here's what she came up with. Enjoy!


Page to Stage Lesson 
Step 1: 

 1. Search the following places for spoken word/poetry slam performances:

 a. Def Poetry Jam
 b. Button Poetry
 c. Poetry Slam INC.


2. Analyze the performances, paying attention to:

 a. Tone/Voice
 b. Eye Contact
 c. Volume
 d. Pace / Rhythm / Length
 e. Content / Relevance


3.  a. Which performance do you like best?
     b. What stood out to you most?

Step 2: Read Through

Read your poem through silently several times to familiarize yourself with the pacing and rhythm. Say the piece in front of the mirror and practice in front of friends.

 Find the rhythm and musicality in each word and try to connect to the reason behind why the words were written and expressed in the first place.

Don't rush through the reading. Find a steady pace and practice reading with authority and emphasis.

Ste…

Featured Artist Khalisa Rae Shares Her Favourite Essay

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Featured Artist Khalisa Rae is a cross-genre author, with a special talent for sharp observation and getting to the core of whatever issue she's examining. We asked her to share one of her favourite personal essays. The one she chose is Swiping Left On The Margins. 



 "No matter how breathtaking, stunning, accomplished, or intelligent black women are, we are still at the lowest rung of the desire ladder. But when did this change? When did the oversexualized black woman become stale and uninteresting in the world of cyber dating?"

You can read the full essay here.


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Featured Artist Khalisa Rae's Athenian Press Project

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Wildlings, Featured Artist Khalisa Rae developed an amazing project to support young creatives - take a peek!


Featured Artist Khalisa Rae is the co-director and creative programs coordinator of Athenian Press and Workshops. Athenian was founded with the vision of providing a safe space for marginalised voices, support and resources to lift those voices up, and use writing and publishing to deconstruct and reshape the dominant ideologies that reinforce marginalisation. These are missions which align closely with the values of Animal Heart Press!

Athenian’s core values are:
Social justice Feminism Accessibility Intersectionality Artistic excellence Creativity and imagination Community building Sustainability and independence

Based in Wilmington, North Carolina, Athenian provides a number of programs in support of its mission, including workshops, professional development, community outreach, retreats and festivals, educational outreach, and youth camps. These services are all designed t…

Two Beautiful Poems from Featured Artist Khalisa Rae

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When we asked Khalisa Rae for some of her poetry to feature on the blog, these two stood out - they have the most beautiful, haunting voices.

Black Boy Painted as Butterfly (previously published in Still Harbor)

It is your back that compels
them to gawk, transfixed, as they follow you
flutter away like a ballerina gliding on ice.
It is a dance you do. How you pirouette across
ponds on to plant-life, your angles symmetric
and sharp, your stained skin
geometric shapes splattered with
vibrant pigments.

Watch how the orange of your cape glimmers
in the sun, the way your wings wave so gracefully
it makes them dizzy. Landing on the edge of leaves
softly as if to kiss them. Then leaving again,
never settling in your last spot
for fear of being land-locked
by glass walls.

Your dance a gentle opening and closing,
widening and spreading,
as if to invite them to watch,
but you are not here to stay.
You are merely an eyelash batting.

They want to make you a show pony-spectacle,
a painted play toy,…

AHP Managing Editor Amanda McLeod Talks Safety With Khalisa Rae

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Wildlings, today we're talking about literary community safety and how we can lift each other up, with Featured Artist Khalisa Rae.


Amanda McLeod: Recently you had a negative experience in the literary community. I've seen the literary community be incredibly warm, welcoming and inclusive - but I've also seen some more unpleasant things happen, albeit mostly online. How should we, as a community, respond when we see something happening among us that we disagree with?

Khalisa Rae: I think the answer is always to respond from a place of restorative support and solidarity- with a spirit of learning and listening- otherwise more damage than good is done. Believing those that have been wronged and validating their experience is so key. Finding ways to hold space for marginalized folks, and practice active listening is always a way to show up for folks

For the most part, my experience in the literary community has been warm and welcoming. I am the co-founder and director of a femi…