Thursday, February 23rd // 7pm-9pm 

Speak Social DC is a community-based poetry reading series that seeks to resist hate, empower the unheard, and promote intersectionality.  We will host readings by three accomplished young poets, Safia Elhillo, Danniel Schoonebeek, and Kelly Forsythe. 
Hosted by John James and Sarah Maddix. 
This event is free and open to the public.


SAFIA ELHILLO’s first full-length collection, The January Children, is forthcoming from University of Nebraska Press in 2017. Sudanese by way of Washington, DC, she received a BA from NYU’s Gallatin School of Individualized Study and an MFA in poetry at the New School. Safia is a Pushcart Prize nominee, co-winner of the 2015 Brunel University African Poetry Prize, and winner of the 2016 Sillerman First Book Prize for African Poets. She has received fellowships from Cave Canem, The Conversation, and Crescendo Literary and The Poetry Foundation’s Poetry Incubator. In addition to appearing in several journals and anthologies including “The BreakBeat Poets: New American Poetry in the Age of Hip-Hop,” her work has been translated into Arabic and Greek. With Fatimah Asghar, she is co-editor of the anthology “Halal If You Hear Me.”

DANNIEL SCHOONEBEEK is the author of American Barricade (YesYes Books, 2014) and Trébuchet, a 2015 National Poetry Series selection published by University of Georgia Press in 2016. A recipient of a 2015 Ruth Lilly and Dorothy Sargent Rosenberg Poetry Fellowship from Poetry Foundation, recent work appears in The New Yorker, Poetry, Kenyon Review, and elsewhere.

KELLY FORSYTHE is currently living & writing in Washington, D.C. She is the author of Perennial (Coffee House Press, forthcoming 2018), and a digital chapbook of poems, Helix (Floating Wolf Quarterly). Her work has been published in Black Warrior Review, The Literary Review, The Minnesota Review, and Columbia Poetry Review, among others. She was recently featured in American Poet as an Academy of American Poets "Emerging Poet," with an introduction by Noelle Kocot. Forsythe is the Director of Publicity for Copper Canyon Press. Prior to working with Copper Canyon, she was a consultant for the web team at the Poetry Foundation, and worked with the marketing department at Poets & Writers Magazine. She has given lectures on publishing and book publicity at NYU, The Academy of American Poets, The Bethesda Writers Center, and Manhattanville College. She is the founder and editor of Phantom Books, an online literary journal and chapbook press, and teaches creative writing in the Jimenez-Porter Writers House at The University of Maryland.