Tuesday, July 24, 7pm – Poetry
Lamont B. Steptoe author of
Meditations in “Congo Square”
($11.95 Whirlwind Press)
Lamont B.Steptoe was born and raised in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. He is the author and/or editor of fifteen poetry collections, the latest of which is Meditations in Congo Square, and publisher/founder of Whirlwind Press. He is the winner of an American Book Award and a Pew Fellowship in the Arts.
“Most poets are simply that. Sonia Sanchez and Lamont B. Steptoe answer to a higher calling. Prophecy! In Meditations… Steptoe is the Necromancer, translating the language of the dead to the living, whether they be the recently departed or Ante-Bellum spirits. While our age of obesity, self-gratification, and credit cards whistles past the graveyard, Lamont reads this burial ground like an Alufaa would read cowrie shells. Yes, there is the Philadelphia of Brotherly love, the old Quaker City that infuriated George Washington by offering refuge to fugitive slaves, but there is the other Philadelphia, the City of Brotherly death, whose atrocities are still being unearthed. Lamont B. Steptoe is the poet of this hidden Philadelphia. His brother Philadelphia poet of death, Edgar Allen Poe. Would be proud.” Ishmeal Reeds
“There are places we dream, and places, often mass grave sits, that dream through us- if, like Lamont Steptoe, we are open to the restless spirits who abide there, denied voice in their time, and wishing now to catch history’s ear. “Turn up the silence loud,” he says, and the whispering dead are heard, as lost ancestors “call this place out of its name,” and Philly’s Washington Square Park becomes Congo Square, a restitution and a requiem.” – Eleanor Wilner