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Aja Monet Bacquie


The Giving Tree

[Aja Monet Bacquie in Hebron. Image by Christopher Hazou]

After #DDPalestine               At the core of suffering, there is always a door, a wall. The knob shouting, they came in violently. Before the sun rose, there was an Israeli flag   posted outside. Beit Hanina, Silwan, Sheikh Jurrah. They came in violently for her home, her dignity or both, veins on a grandmother’s wrist pleading over a stove that fed   the faces around it, rusted faucets cleansing tired ...

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The youngest individual to win the legendary Nuyorican Poet’s Café Grand Slam title—Aja Monet is an Afro-Cuban-Jamaican poet, educator, and activist from East NY, Brooklyn. A graduate of Sarah Lawrence College, she received her BA in Liberal Arts and was awarded the The Andrea Klein Willison Prize for Poetry which was established to recognize work in poetry that “effectively examines relationships among women, especially in the context of justice for everyone.” She received an MFA in Creative Writing from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. Aja Monet independently published her first book of poetry, The Black Unicorn Sings (2010). In 2012, she collaborated with poet/musician Saul Williams on a book entitled, Chorus: A Literary Mixtape (MTV Books/Simon & Schuster). In 2014, Aja Monet was awarded the YWCA of the City of New York’s “One to Watch Award”—an award established in honor of Monet’s work to honor women under the age of 30 who exemplify the mission: to empower women and eliminate racism. An internationally established poet, in 2015, she traveled to Palestine on a solidarity trip with the Dream Defenders where U.S. activists from across the nation met with Palestinian activists and artists to share, create, and learn.