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Announcing the 2017 Poets House Emerging Poets Fellows

Poets House
Photo by by Kevin Scott Josephs -

Poets House

Now in its sixth year, the Poets House Emerging Poets Fellowship provides poets an opportunity to receive guidance and instruction from distinguished and diverse faculty, and camaraderie and support from a cohort of engaged emerging voices. Students have access to Poets House’s extensive 70,000-volume library, unique archives, and wide-ranging programs. Tuition is free to those accepted into the program.

Funded annually by a generous grant from the Jerome Foundation, the fifteen-week program facilitates artistic, professional, and personal development through weekly workshops, individualized mentoring sessions, and craft discussions with visiting poets, and roundtables with experts on performance and contemporary publishing. The program culminates in a final group reading at Poets House. The 2017 Emerging Poets Fellowship will be led by r. erica doyle.


Gbenga Adesina

Gbenga Adesina

Gbenga Adesina, Nigerian born poet and essayist, jointly won the 2016 Brunel African Poetry Prize. His poem, “How To Paint A Girl” was selected by Mathew Zapruder for its “clarity of observation and empathetic insight into the suffering of another” for the New York Times. He was a 2016 Norman Mailer Poetry Fellow at Pepperdine University, Malibu, California. He has received scholarships and residencies from Fine Arts Work Centre, Provincetown and The Open Society Foundation in Goree Island, off the coast of Senegal. His poetry chapbook, Painter of Water was published by APBF and Akashic Books, New York in a series edited by Kwame Dawes and Chris Abani. His poems have appeared or forthcoming in Prairie Schooner, Brittle Paper, Vinyl, Ploughshares and elsewhere. His poetry manuscript, Holy Bodies was a finalist for the 2017 Sillerman First Book Prize. Read a poem by Gbenga...

Desiree C. Bailey

Desiree C. Bailey

Desiree Bailey was born in Trinidad and Tobago, and grew up in Queens, NY. She is the author of the fiction chapbook In Dirt or Saltwater (O’Clock Press, 2016). Her poetry and fiction has been published in Best American Poetry, Callaloo, The Rumpus and Transition, among other publications. She has an MFA from Brown University and has received fellowships from The Norman Mailer Center, Callaloo Creative Writing Workshop, Kimbilio and Princeton in Africa. She is also a recipient of the Poets and Writers Amy Award. Desiree lives in New York, where she teaches literature and creative writing. Read a poem by Desiree...

Kyle Dacuyan

Kyle Dacuyan is a poet, performer, and translator. He is a 2017 Pushcart Prize nominee and the recipient of support from the Sewanee Writers' Conference and Academy of American Poets. His work has been shown at Ars Nova, Le Petit Versailles, and as part of the Philly FringeArts Festival. Recent poems appear in Best New Poets 2016, The Shallow Ends, wildness, and The Nashville Review. Read a poem by Kyle...

Camonghne Felix

Camonghne Felix, M.A. is a poet, political strategist, media junkie and cultural worker. She received an M.A. in Arts Politics from NYU, an MFA from Bard College, and has received Fellowships from Cave Canem, Callaloo and Poets House. The 2012 Pushcart Prize nominee is the author of the chapbook Yolk, and was recently listed by Black Youth Project as a "Black Girl From the Future You Should Know." Her first full-length collection of poems, Build Yourself a Boat, is a University of Wisconsin Press Brittingham & Pollak Prize finalist. Read a poem by Camonghne...

Marwa Helal

Marwa Helal

Marwa Helal is a poet and journalist. Her work appears in Apogee, Hyperallergic, the Offing, Poets & Writers, the Recluse, Winter Tangerine and elsewhere. She is the author of Invasive species (Nightboat Books 2019) and the winner of BOMB Magazine’s Biennial 2016 Poetry Contest. Helal has been awarded fellowships from Poets House (2017), Brooklyn Poets (2016) and Cave Canem (2016). Born in Al Mansurah, Egypt, Helal currently lives and teaches in Brooklyn, New York. She received her MFA in creative writing from the New School and her BA in journalism and international studies from Ohio Wesleyan University. @marwahelal on Twitter or Read a poem by Marwa...

Sean D. Henry-Smith

Sean D. Henry-Smith is a poet and photographer intrigued by their intersections. His first chapbook, Body Text, was selected by Lucas de Lima for the New Delta Review 2015-2016 Chapbook Competition. His work has appeared in Tammy Journal, New Delta Review, Newspaper and Tagvverk. You can find him online at @surrealsermons and Read a poem by Sean...

Nkosi Nkululeko

Nkosi Nkululeko

Nkosi Nkululeko, a Callaloo Fellow, has been nominated for Best of the Net, the Independent Best American Poetry and the Pushcart Prize. Nkosi was a featured speaker on TEDxNewYork and is a finalist for the 2016 Winter Tangerine Awards for Poetry. His work is published or forthcoming in [PANK] Magazine, Third Coast, VINYL, No Token, and other publications. He lives in Harlem, New York.Read a poem by Nkosi

Sahar Romani

Sahar Romani is an ethnographer, educator, and poet. She received degrees in South Asian Studies and Human Geography from University of Washington and Oxford. Her poems are published or forthcoming in Podium and the Margins. She teaches interdisciplinary research and writing at the Gallatin School at New York University. Read a poem by Sahar...

Adeeba Talukder

Adeeba Talukder is a Pakistani-American poet and translator. She translates Urdu and Persian poetry, and cannot help but bring elements from these worlds to her own work in English. A Best of the Net nominee, her work has appeared or is forthcoming in Glass Poetry Press, Solstice Literary Magazine, Washington Square Review, PBS Frontline, and the Huffington Post among other publications. Adeeba received her MFA in Creative Writing at the University of Michigan, and is currently working on translating two books of poetry. When she isn't writing, she spends a disproportionate amount of her time singing. Read a poem by Adeeba...

Elisabet Velasquez

Elisabet Velasquez

Elisabet Velasquez is a Puerto Rican writer, mother, feminist from Bushwick, Brooklyn. Her work has been nominated for Best Of The Net. Her poems have appeared in numerous publications including Huffington Post, Muzzle, Latina and Vibe Magazine. She is a VONA alum and the author of the chapbook PTSD. You can find her online at Read a poem by Elisabet...

*Fellows photos by Aslan Chalom
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r. erica doyle

2017 Poets House Emerging Poets Fellowship will be led by r. erica doyle.

r. erica doyle was born in Brooklyn to Trinidadian immigrant parents. Her debut collection, proxy (Belladonna* Books, 2013), won the 2014 Norma Farber First Book Award from the Poetry Society of America and was a Finalist for the Lambda Literary Award in Lesbian Poetry. Her work has been anthologized in Best American Poetry, Our Caribbean: A Gathering of Gay and Lesbian Writing from the Antilles, Gumbo: A Celebration of African American Writing, Bum Rush the Page: A Def Poetry Jam, Gathering Ground: A Reader Celebrating Cave Canem’s First Decade and Voices Rising: Celebrating 20 Years of Black Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Writing. Her poetry and fiction appear in various journals, including Ploughshares, Callaloo, Bloom, From the Fishouse, Blithe House Quarterly and Sinister Wisdom.