Members of Congress only need to look around the District in which they sometimes live to get a snapshot of that turmoil and struggle to which you refer. D.C. has the greatest income discrepancy of any city of its size in the country. We have the highest HIV infection rate, the shortest life expectancy, the highest adult illiteracy rate. So, we know of what we speak.
But we also have a rich history of struggle, of resistance, often through poetry and the arts. Split This Rock builds on this history, on the shoulders of so many who have written and organized and built community here, from Langston Hughes and Georgia Douglas Johnson to Essex Hemphill and Gaston Neal, to name just a few of our foremothers and fathers. We celebrate this tradition and teach it to one another and to the hundreds who come here for Split This Rock Poetry Festival and our other programs from all over the country.
Read the whole interview here.