Get Lit Minute | June Jordan

July 12, 2021

In this week's episode of the Get Lit Minute, your weekly poetry podcast, we spotlight  Jamaican American poet, essayist, teacher, and activist, June Jordan. In her writing, she explored issues of gender, race, immigration, and representation.

Jordan was passionate about using Black English in her writing and poetry, teaching others to treat it as its own language and an important outlet for expressing Black culture.

Jordan was inducted on the National LGBTQ Wall of Honor within the Stonewall National Monument in 2019.

“A Short Note to My Very Critical and Well-Beloved Friends and Comrades”

First they said I was too light

Then they said I was too dark

Then they said I was too different

Then they said I was too much the same

Then they said I was too young

Then they said I was too old

Then they said I was too interracial

Then they said I was too much a nationalist

Then they said I was too silly

Then they said I was too angry

Then they said I was too idealistic

Then they said I was too confusing altogether:

Make up your mind! They said. Are you militant

or sweet? Are you vegetarian or meat? Are you straight

or are you gay?

And I said, Hey! It’s not about my mind