Under the Sun


In stock

poems by

Glenis Redmond

Poetry book, 140 pages. Cover price: $14

($12 if ordered from the MSR Online Bookstore)

ISBN: 978-1-59948-133-3

Release date: 2008



Glenis Redmond is a 2005-2006 North Carolina Arts Council Literary Award recipient and a Denny C. Plattner Award winner for Outstanding Poetry sponsored by the Appalachian Heritage journal. She has been inducted in the Mt. Xpress’ Hall of Fame for Best Poet in Western North Carolina after winning for over seven years. She is a Kennedy Teaching Artist and her work has aired on National Public Radio. She is a past winner of the Southern Fried Slam and a finalist of National Poetry Slam.

She has been published most recently in Meridians, African Voices, EMRYS, The Asheville Poetry Review, 2006 Kakalak: A Journal of Carolina Poets, Appalachian Heritage and the Appalachian Journal. Glenis is a native of Greenville, South Carolina. She presently resides in Asheville, North Carolina with her twin daughters Amber and Celeste.

Website: www.Glenisredmond.com
Bookings: www.Loydartists.com

Under the Sun is the long awaited birthing of poetry with purpose, a muse claiming and renaming seasons, needing no permissions, no namesakes. Glenis Redmond’s word womb has burst leaking truth, grace, healing and celebration. The ground of her literary newness becomes more sacred as it receives this powerful afterbirth… libations of anointed ink.

Jaki Shelton Green

This is definitely the time to read the poetry of Glenis Redmond. There is a time read, a time to laugh then say, “My God” and “oh, wow”. She paints poetic structures of family and plants historical measures to their portraits. This young story woman takes the reader home with her. We walk by the river Soul, from whence we all came. We want to catch her words and arrive in fields of oxygen, fresh air being whipped by another generation strong African American writers. Glenis gives birth to humor with poems like “Poetic Fate”: You will laugh out loud with the story of the daughter “solving for the unknown” contrasted with the mother writing “because of the unknown”. The poet takes us with her, on her sometimes painful journey of loves’ recapitulation. The poet labors yet it is the reader who profits.

Jackie Earley

She Can’t Read

She couldn’t read,
much less read me
even look me up
like simple digits
listed in a telephone book.
She couldn’t catch
the gist of my spine
standing straight,
my frame holding promise
pointing to that shimmering pond called sky
though I am sure she tried.

Saw herself reflected
as a swift dream,
a black swan gliding high,
migration was beneath her.
She gave flight
over to fight in the sixth grade.
In a perfect world
we’d all have wings.
But she couldn’t read me
or spell it out
much less see me
with so much hate in her eyes
and she wasn’t taking a chance on the flight.

Uncle Walter
Tribute for Walter Bailey

Uncle Walter was all brown suit serious
about the Lord.
A handkerchief-brow-wiping-holy-sweatin’
kind of man
Uncle Walter studied on kindness
therefore kindness studied on him.
Planting a sweet smile on his face,
blessing him with an ever ready hand
to pat our churchgoing backs.
He was all this, but mostly he was
a Praise the Lord with a Holy Ghost
Singing Stiff-legged Shuffle Dance.
And he danced
as he sang
and he sang while he danced
calling forth the whole of Bethlehem Baptist Church
to sing it children one more time
and he did
and we did
three, five, seven more times.
He obeyed the Lord and so did we
whipped up in his “Praise the Lord” frenzy.
He didn’t need no hymnal
the words written like God’s words ‘cross his chest,
memorized from his old-timey bye and bye,
flying out from his mouth like holy rain.
He didn’t need no songbook, he was a walking hymn
and every song filled each step he took
made every soul stand up
take a listen and dance.
I say they don’t make men like Uncle Walter no more
blessing us with the chorus
I want somewhere, somewhere
somewhere to lay my head,
somewhere to lay my head,
somewhere to lay my head.

We know now with blessed assurance
heaven has smiled on him
blessed him with a golden pillow
and somewhere to lay his head
and we all shout,
Hallelujah one more time!

M.I.T. (mother in training)

We called her lil’ momma or baby Jeanette.
Before she could talk
she’d walk defiantly and with a purpose.
Her chubby hands closed into fist.
Her mouth set with serious adult determination.
Some children come here like that.
Emerge fully grown
with a rock solid sense of self.
come here with a mission.
This one
always got a hand on her hip
or the other one pointing like an arrow
to what needs to be done
or better yet doing it herself.
This whipstitch of a happening,
Amber, my youngest,
rock solid as her name.
I didn’t make her this way,
she came like this on her own.
Knowing what is what
every which way and that,
and pitching in at just the right time.
She’s got cabinets to clean.
She’s got beds to make.
She’s got TV channels to change.
We call her R. C. Q.
for Remote Control Queen.
She’s got her finger on the pulse.
She’s got a sister to keep
and she even tries to run me with,
Mom a tattoo is totally out of the question.
What will it look like on you when you are eighty?

I let loose with a look that says this is my body and my money.
She deflects my words
with rolling eyes and an all-knowing sigh.
She’s got maternal instincts vibrating way too high.
What can I say?
It comes from my side.
She is just like me
even more than I ever was.
She’s got a schedule posted on her wall,
wake up 6 a.m., 6:30 a.m. wake up rest of household.
Some children come knowing what must be done,
carving the way carrying on.

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