In celebration of National Poetry Month and in place of offering a physical exhibit to view, the Library has created a series of weekly blog posts to share a bit about a few of the poets whose work reside in the Class of 1945 Library’s Special Collections.
This week’s post highlights the work of Dolores Kendrick, Vira I. Heinz Professor and instructor in English emerita.
Dolores Kendrick (1927 – 2017)
Dolores Kendrick was an African American poet. Initially Kendrick taught in the Washington DC public school system, where she helped found the School Without Walls. She continued her career in education at Phillips Exeter Academy teaching there for two decades.
One of Kendrick’s most notable works in entitled The Women of Plums: Poems in the Voices of Slave Women (1989), which she eventually adapted for the stage and won the New York Playwrights Award in 1997. Over her lifetime Kendrick received various accolades including fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts, Yaddo, and Fulbright and was the recipient of the George Kent Award for Literature, the Anisfield-Wolf Award, and was inducted into International Literary Hall of Fame for writers of African descent at Chicago State. (Source: Poetry Foundation).
Poems & More
- Bio, poems, and recordings of Kendrick’s work from the Library of Congress.
- A Poem for Mom, Set to Her Favorite Opera – In this brief interview from NPR, Kendrick recites a poem she wrote to celebrate her late mother.
- DNC Presents: The Women of Plums – DCN Presents the theatrical adaption of the 1989 book written by DC Poet Laureate, Dolores Kendrick entitled The Women of Plums: Poems in the Voices of Slave Women.