2024 DC Poet Project Culminating Event May 4 at Anacostia Library

Day Eight is pleased to announce the finalists in the 2024 DC Poet Project competition: Kiarra Patterson, Amuchechukwu Nwafor, Jeffrey ‘Big Homey’ Banks, and CanMan tha Poet. Day Eight’s annual open-to-all poetry competition, now in its eighth year, culminates in publication of a new book of poetry by the winning poet. Past books published within the project included 2023 winner Brandon Douglas’ Dipped In Cerulean, 2022 winner Dominic McDonald’s I’d Rather Be Called a Nerd, and 2021 winner Jenn Koiter’s So Much of Everything.

Come listen to the finalists perform their poetry at the culminating reading event, 2-3:30pm, May 4, 2024, at the Anacostia Library, 1800 Marion Barry Ave SE, DC, and then live vote to select the 2024 DC Poet Project winner.

Space is limited, the event is free for all, and advance registration is recommended. To register, reserve your ticket on eventbrite here.

The featured poets in the 2024 DC Poet Project reading series, who also served as judges selecting the finalists, included Courtney LeBlanc, Kim B Miller, Teri Cross Davis, Pi-anir the poet, Holly Karapetkova, Shaquetta Nelson, John Johnson, Brandon Douglas, Rebecca Bishophall, Khadijah Ali-Coleman, Regie Cabico, Indran Amirthanayagam, and Pacyinz Lyfoung. The 2024 Poet Project reading series was curated by Regie Cabico, hosted by Aaron Holmes, and funded in part by the DC Commission on the Arts and Humanities.

The 2024 DC Poet Project Finalists

Kiarra Patterson, known as Ki, was bred in Southeast DC. She is a graduate of the first degree granting HBCU, Lincoln University, and completed her dual masters at Widener University. Kiarra is currently a sexual assault counselor with a special focus on the military community. Creatively, she is a poet, self published author, and certified teaching artist but knows there is no limit to further developing her craft. Ki believes poetry is a healing power and continues to create the space for expression and release in inclusive spaces. Kiarra received the 2021 DC Mayor’s Art Award for Emerging Creative. She was also nominated for the DMV Renaissance Awards for Best New Poet in 2022.

Amuchechukwu Nwafor is a local writer, educator and teaching artist in the Washington, D.C metropolitan area. She is a first-generation born Black American whose poetry touches on the diaspora, mental health, and the female experience. She considers her poems to be still life paintings of intimate experiences, emotions and observations. Amuchechukwu has performed at Towson University, Pentagon City Fashion Mall, the Show Place Arena and many other places in the DMV. Her poems were recently published in the Maryland Bards Anthology and Day Eight’s Mid Atlantic Review. Through her writing she aspires to heal, grow and inspire people from all different walks of life.

Jeffrey ‘Big Homey’ Banks has worked with America’s Got Talent champion Brandon Leake, New York Times best-selling author Jason Reynolds, and GRAMMY-Nominated artists Kevin Powell and Ethelbert Miller. He has performed nationwide, including at over 30 college campuses, and served as a Lead Teaching Artist with the DC Arts & Humanities Education Collaborative and Words, Beats and Life. He is co-editor, with Maritza Rivera, of Diaspora Café: D.C., an afro-latin poetry anthology. He was a finalist in the 2018 and 2021 DC Poet Project competitions, and hopes this will be an opportunity to produce his first full-length poetry collection.

CanMan Tha Poet is an emerging poet from Washington, DC. He graduated Luke C. Moore Academy SHS with the Eagle award for best character and NMTI with certifications in Swedish & Sports Massage. He’s overcome his share of hardships along the way, like losing his parents before the age of 21, which helped him develop a deep passion for poetry. His writing style is diverse and intricate, creating vivid imagery that will leave you spellbound. CanMan Tha Poet is a storyteller who weaves together diverse themes in his poetry. His raw and unfiltered poetry will take you on an enthralling journey through the urban landscapes of his words. Follow him @CanManEnterprises on all socials.

View videos of earlier events in the 2024 Poet Project reading series events on Day Eight’s facebook channel.