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AJ McKenna

Updated: Wed, 19 Mar 2014 09:22 pm

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I'm the author of two pamphlets of poetry, 'A Lady of a Certain Rage' and 'names and songs of women' and a spoken-word album '...the gunshots which kill us are silenced'. 'Letter to a Minnesota Prison', a poetry film written by myself and directed by Laura Degnan, was commissioned by Apples and Snakes and the Paul Hamlyn Foundation and shown at the South Bank Centre in London last year as part of 'Architects of Our Republic', a celebration of the fiftieth anniversary of Martin Luther King's 'I Have a Dream' speech, and has been shown at various venues throughout the country since. A multiple slam-winning poet, I was a finalist in the 2013 Superheroes of Slam competition, and I've been a featured performer at Newcastle Pride, Transpose, Jawdance, Forked and Jibba Jabba, among other venues. As a trans poet, my work deals with LGBT issues a lot of the time, but also covers other topics from a generally progressive standpoint.


Heart:Burial In light diffused by clouds of ice she stands and holds her shining heart: a pewter gimcrack, cracker-hatched and carried, over frost-sharp grass, to this quarry where she stands in ash, surrounded by discarded cans. The shadow of the monument, black cousin to the Parthenon, just seems to fall across the sun. She parts the blades of grass and digs, one-fingered, quick, an opening. At sunset, on the first day of the year, her heart is buried.

All poems are copyright of the originating author. Permission must be obtained before using or performing others' poems.

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