The Virginia G. Piper
Center for Creative Writing

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Juju Poetics with J. Allen

Date(s): Saturdays, March 6-20, 2021, 2:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. Phoenix MST
Craft Class
Genre and Form(s): Poetry
Cost: $109 Regular, $98 Student

About the Class

"You can’t tell us / shit. We always down for the miracle." —Angel Nafis, "Woo Woo Roll Deep"

When it seemed the end of the world was nigh, I began to ask myself the following question over again but in different ways. How, I'd ask, does one of multiple intersections write when: 1. several states are on fire? 2. police still find time to kill Black folk during a global pandemic? 3. cismen still find time to kill Black trans folk during a global pandemic? 4. the virus continues to claim the lives of the masses? 5. the dead have not been mourned? Though a lot of the writing involves intuition, there is also a degree of guidance that takes place. Where do we find guidance when all around us fails, calling into question our intuitions? The answer: Spirit. Yes, this will be a woo woo ass workshop. We will engage in the act of noticing, beckoning the revelatory into our writing. We will access divinatory methods to encounter not only the energy of the written word but the energy of our dead as well. We will study the writings of Black authors—such as Lucille Clifton, Sonia Sanchez, M. NourbeSe Philip, &c. &c—who have engaged occult practice in their work & create practices of our own to get in touch with our guides. In short, we will practice the art of listening.

Meet Your Instructor

A Black Box

J Allen has received fellowships & scholarships from Tin House, Kenyon Review Writers Workshop, Community of Writers, & VONA, among others. Along with Jari Bradley & Willie Kinard III, J is a founding member of the Black queer gospel trio The Upper Room Collective.

About the Piper Writers Studio

The Piper Writers Studio is committed to supporting writers in every stage of their development by providing challenging, diverse, and accessible educational opportunities. All classes are not-for-credit, and are intended for an open to the public. You do not need to be an ASU student to attend. Writers of all backgrounds, genres, and experience levels are welcome. Discounts for students, senior citizens, individuals experiencing economic challenges, and other groups are available for every class. To learn more about the Piper Writer Studio, visit our website at