The Wardrobe’s Best Dressed: Denise Miller’s “Core”

Denise Miller PicPhoto credit: Freshwater Photography


*the found poems in this section are adapted from two of the 300 pages of oral
histories of Latino/as and African Americans in Saginaw, Michigan collected and
compiled by Dr. Michelle S. Johnson in a project called Community Spaces of the

the 15th & the 1st—Found Poem #2 A.R.9-9-99

farming? what kind of

                  small         scale               just to support               his                family
         cotton, corn                             hay             . . . we raised
      sweet potatoes Sugar cane molasses                         hogs and my mother

       raised a lot of chickens and let’s see. milk cows                    sell the milk.
                               that’s how
          he would come by a little money                                          And then the
                                 15th and 1st
                                             they would pay him       for the milk
                                                           twice a month.


This selection comes from Denise Miller’s book Core, available now from Willow Books. Purchase your copy here!

Denise Miller is a poet and mixed media artist whose work reflects conscious survival for herself and for individuals living in an “ism” driven culture. Her poetry and art are practices that merge activism, spirituality and craft that draws from and re-shapes cultural currents. Currently, Miller is working on a collection of poems that identify and interrogate the ways that people live out how the body evolves in the absence of peace, how the body navigates when the fiduciary/fixed points are sound and violence, and what people reflect or sound back in its presence.

Her publications include poems in Dunes Review, African American Review and Blackberry: A Magazine . She’s the 2015 Willow Books Emerging Poet, an AROHO Waves Discussion Fellowship awardee, a finalist for the Barbara Deming Money for Women Fund, and a Hedgebrook Fellow. Her newest book, Core, released from Willow Books in November 2015 has been nominated for a 2016 American Book Award and a 2016 Pushcart Prize. Additionally, one of her poems from a collection in progress has also been nominated for the 2016 Pushcart Prize. More of her work can be found at

librecht baker. Dembrebrah West African Drum and Dance Ensemble member. Kouman Kele Dance and Drum Ensemble memeber. MFA in Interdisciplinary Arts from Goddard College. VONA/Voices & Lambda Literary Fellow. Sundress Publications’ Assistant Editor. Poetry in Writing the Walls Down: A Convergence of LGBTQ Voices & CHORUS: A Literary Mixtape. Currently, birthing & manifesting.



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