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Poetry Reading: Thomas Kneeland & Amie Whittemore

August 31 @ 2:00 pm - 4:00 pm

Join Thomas Kneeland and Amie Whittemore on August 31st at 2pm for a reading, discussion, and signing of their works!

Join Thomas Kneeland and Amie Whittemore on August 31st at Indy Reads from 2-4pm for a reading, discussion, and signing of their works: We Be Walkin’ Blackly in the Deep by Thomas Kneeland and Nest of Matches by Amie Whittemore.

There will be a reading, discussion, Q&A session, and a signing to follow.

This event is recommended for ages 18+.

All proceeds from book sales at Indy Reads support our English literacy programming.

We Be Walkin’ Blackly in the Deep

From the advent of White Lion to the current state of systemic racism, forcibly woven into institutions of power, we’ve found ways to combat oppression. If we look at influential figures within our literary landscape, we’ll find Amiri Baraka, James Baldwin, Maya Angelou, Gwendolyn Brooks, Toni Morrison, Zora Neale Hurston, and a host of prolific Black writers. They are the ones who set and reset the literary arts landscape, time and time again, to ensure that we would always have a place in the larger American and global society.

These writers, most of whom were poets, established the barriers between societal order and chaos. And while those barriers found, and find, themselves cracked by the thunderous, battering ram of injustice, there will always be new waves of literary cement to rebuild and strengthen the indestructible power of Black words.

This chapbook collection begins to unearth and restore color to the white-washed notions about the dark and terrifying facets of American history.

Nest of Matches

Amie Whittemore’s Nest of Matches is a lavish declaration of the beauty of the natural world, queer identity, and of the imagination set free. Whittemore’s third collection explores the complexities of love—romantic, familial, and love for place—and wonders at cycles of life, finding that: “Every habit / even love—strangest / of them all—offers exhaustion / and renewal.” Moving seamlessly from meditations on the moon’s phases to explorations of dream spaces to searches for meaning through patterns of love and loss, Whittemore’s work embodies the mysteries of dichotomies—grief and joy, consciousness and unconsciousness, habit and spontaneity—and how they coexist to create our identities. Throughout the collection, Whittemore reveals how interior nature manifests into exterior habits and how physical landscapes shape the psyche.

Meet the Author: Thomas Kneeland

Thomas Kneeland is the author of We Be Walkin’ Blackly in the Deep (Marian University Department of Media, Communication, and Design) and a 2022 Frontier Poetry Global Poetry Prize finalist. He is a 2024 Speculative Play & Just Futurities Scholar-in-Residence, which is funded by Indiana University, the Mellon Foundation, IUI Arts & Humanities Institute, IUI Center for Africana Studies & Culture, and the Ray Bradbury Center. He is also the Founder & Editor-in-Chief of The Elevation Review. His publication credits include Southern Humanities Review, The Amistad, The Rumpus, Vagabond City Lit, Up the Staircase Quarterly, South Florida Poetry Journal, and elsewhere. Thomas received his BA in English Writing from DePauw University, an MA in Ministry from Wesley Seminary, and an MFA in Poetry from Butler University.

Meet the Author: Amie Whittemore

Amie Whittemore (she/her) is the author of the poetry collections Glass Harvest (Autumn House Press), Star-tent: A Triptych (Tolsun Books), and Nest of Matches (Autumn House). She was the 2020-2021 Poet Laureate of Murfreesboro, Tennessee, and an Academy of American Poets Laureate Fellow. Her poems have won multiple awards, including a Dorothy Sargent Rosenberg Prize, and her poems and prose have appeared in The Gettysburg Review, Nashville Review, Smartish Pace, Pleiades, and elsewhere. She teaches creative writing at Eastern Illinois University and serves as director of MTSU Write, a from-home creative writing mentorship program. Learn more at amiewhittemore.com.

This event is Pay-What-You-Can. Here’s what your suggested donation can do for the Indy Reads community:

FREE – This ticket is for attendees that would like to attend this event and are unable to purchase a ticket. Indy Reads values our community and facilitators. We are proud to provide programming to all. Thank you for being a part of our community!

$10 – This donation covers the cost of one attendee to this event. Indy Reads strives to bring the very best programming to Fountain Square and all Hoosiers. Thank you for helping us to keep our quality programs accessible for all!

$20 – This donation covers the cost of two attendees to this event. If you are attending as an individual, your ticket at this level makes it possible for another who cannot afford a ticket to attend. It is only through the generosity of our community that we are able to support programs that enrich the lives of all Hoosiers. Thank you for your support!

Other – “Pay-What-You-Can” really does mean pay what you can. Indy Reads appreciates that every one of our community members is able to support our vision of 100% literacy for all in different ways. Whether you can pay $5 or $50, we are so excited to see you – and thank you for your support!


August 31
2:00 pm - 4:00 pm


Indy Reads
1066 Virginia Avenue
Indianapolis, IN 46203 United States
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