NICHOLAS POWERS

JOURNALIST. POET. PROFESSOR. TRIFECTA

Hands Up! Don’t Shoot! Death and Visibility in Black America

On August 9, about a month and a half ago, we heard news of police officer Darren Wilson in Ferguson, Missouri, shooting an unarmed black teen, Michael Brown. Instantly, we people of color saw in him our sons, our brothers, our friends, uncles and fathers. The bullets that killed Brown ricochet throughout Black America and it felt like our spirits were bleeding drops of gasoline on the smoldering coals inside. And when the rage erupted, we filled the cities yelling, “No Justice, No Peace!”

October 18, 2014 · Leave a comment

10/9: Panel Discussion on Environmental Justice with Nick Powers & Lorraine Currelley

Join us for a lively, thoughtful, informative panel discussion between artists and activists on environmental justice in the African Diasporan community.

October 8, 2014 · Leave a comment

Greening Our Desires

As we got further away, the Earth diminished in size,” said astronaut James Irwin. “Finally it shrank to the size of a marble, the most beautiful marble you can imagine… Seeing this has to change a man.” Standing on the moon, Apollo mission astronauts sometimes wept, seeing our planet as a small blue dot easily blotted out by a thumb. After landing, they spoke of planet Earth as a tiny pearl of life engulfed by the vast- ness of space.

September 23, 2014 · Leave a comment

The War Over the War: Israel, Gaza and American Protest

As the latest cease-fire holds, a bomb-battered people pick through rubble and find rage, pain and more rage. Worldwide criticism of Israel, most of which is fueled by sympathy for Palestinians, some by anti-Semitism, has like acid begun to erode Israel’s base of support in the United States. Israel has won in Gaza, but it lost the war over the war.

August 10, 2014 · Leave a comment

The Fourth of July, a Pantoum

The flag like a curtain, a wizard behind it, counting money
an idea colored red, colored white, colored blue
of Americans cheering independence
drunk and dancing around a fire, the smoke of war

August 6, 2014 · Leave a comment

Get Nick’s latest book THE GROUND BELOW ZERO.

If you enjoy Nicholas’s work, in any form, consider picking up a copy of his latest work: THE GROUND BELOW ZERO. Unfortunately only available online on Amazon and B&N, but you can always ask at your local bookstore to see if they carry or would carry his book.

As well Nick does a number of readings in California and New York City, so if you’d like to meet him or host a reading email tara@upsetpress.org to set something up.

July 8, 2014 · Leave a comment

Why I Yelled at the Kara Walker Exhibit

Inside the factory, cool, sweet air filled my nose. It was a rusted cathedral of industry, held up by blistered girders. Across the warehouse I saw the white Mammy sphinx. Visitors bunched around caramel-like statues of children holding baskets. They were antebellum figurines of slave boys, made of resin coated in molasses. The irony of them molded into sugar was of course symbolic of the money and power distilled from their bodies. Viewers seemed to get it. Maybe, I thought, it was safe to turn off the alarm? And then I saw a balding white father, posing with his son next to one of the boy statues, his arms folded across his chest “gangsta” style as the mother took a photo.

July 7, 2014 · Leave a comment

The Declaration of Independence (or Thomas Jefferson Writes Your Break Up Letter)

When in the Course of human error, it becomes necessary for lovers to dissolve the emotional bond which had connected them, and to assume a tongue can tower over the earth and create a separate but equal sign over the Nature of Desire, a decent into the opinions of others requires one to declare the cause of separation.

July 7, 2014 · Leave a comment

Now All Men

In the United States, women saw in Rodger’s misogynist killing spree an extreme form of the violence they live with every day. The Twitter hashtag #YesAllWomen became a public forum for sharing stories of male violence, spanning from microaggressions to rape. Yet many of us men can’t see ourselves in Rodger. Or read the stories of women’s fear or anger or hurt without laughing (yes, I heard men laughing about it on the subway) or dismissing it as the hysterics of overly sensitive women. We choose not to listen because if we did, it would destroy our self-image, by showing how women too often see us: as tormentors, oblivious and arrogant, who cause pain they are too scared or tired or too hopeless to even talk about. – See more at: http://indypendent.org/2014/06/12/now-all-men#sthash.ZfdTqfYf.dpuf

June 30, 2014 · Leave a comment

I Have Mixed Feelings for NYC

“I love NYC”, it’s on his shirt but he’s a tourist so fuck him.
Has he been here long enough to love the pools of piss
on subway steps leading to the sleeping drunk, a tossed
rag-doll in the corner?

June 19, 2014 · Leave a comment

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