Patricia Smith is definitely climbing to the top of the heap as far as poets go, and it’s accurate to call her one of the most promising talents in America. Her award-winning 2012 book, , drew near universal praise for a unique voice that took readers up from the south into the concrete jungles of Detroit and Chicago. The latter she describes as a “city of huge shoulders, thief of tongues” in a poem about her mother striving to drop her Southern dialect and talk “proper”. Her gift with words and phrases like that can make your skin tingle, and it’s a real treat to hear her read live.
Smith charts an organic approach to readings, refusing to pick pieces beforehand and preferring to get to know the audience, talking with them to cater the selection to their tastes and interests, so the evening promises to be surprising.
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5:30 p.m. University of Houston Downtown, One Main Street. For information, call 713-221-8295 or visit uhd.edu. Free.
Thu., March 27, 5:30 p.m., 2014