At this salon, Jasmine Mans read three poems from her highly-anticipated poetry collection, Black Girl, Call Home, and offered prompts grounded in love, justice, mourning, wonder and glory. Using the senses to access personal moments and memories, participants got to free-write to discover a thematic thread for their own future poetry collection. Following, we had an extensive Q&A with Jasmine for all of your burning questions about her journey and the craft of poetry.
“How do you work every day to put worth in your name and where you come from and your family, your home? Someone else’s experience does not hold more value than your own. Your story belongs in the canon.” —Jasmine Mans
Prompt #1: (A Ode) – In celebration
Write a love letter to your home
Things to consider (specificity) : time, location, color, texture, street names, voice
Prompt #2: (A List Poem) – A Listing
Write Yourself home
Give yourself directions on how to get home.
List 10 different directions to get yourself home.
(directions should be both abstract, and concrete)
Jasmine Mans is a queer Black American slam poet and performance artist from Newark, New Jersey. Jasmine’s poetry book, Black Girl, Call Home (Penguin Random House) has been named one of Oprah Magazine’s Most Anticipated LGBTQ Books. The book is now available. Her work has been featured in Elle, Oprah Magazine and many others. She graduated from the University of Wisconsin Madison with a B.A. in African American Studies. She has opened shows for Mos Def, Janelle Monae, and Goapele, and performed at the Kennedy Center, Broadway’s New Amsterdam Theater, the Wisconsin Governor’s Mansion and the Sundance Film Festival. Mans also participated in Brave New Voices, an 8-episode poetry documentary on HBO. Jasmine has written for and performed voiceover work for a number of campaigns including Secret, PANGAIA, and Nowness, to name a few. She can currently be heard as the voice of Ulta Beauty’s national Muse campaign. Her debut collection of poetry, Chalk Outlines of Snow Angels, was published in 2012. Mans is the resident poet at the Newark Public Library. Jasmine also led Newark Symphony Hall’s #EmbraceNewark initiative, which featured writings, footage and photography from local Black artists documenting their pandemic experience.