Category: Book Buzz
Published: 12 August 2013
Flames in the Fire by Phillip Shabazz
"This is a spectacular body of work...I don't use the word spectacular often. It wrenched me inside out and reassembled me whole. Shabazz naps with one eye open where suffering and courage encapsulate lifetimes of experience. Be careful, his poems shamelessly offer grenades in lunch boxes posed as gifts."
—Jaki Shelton Green, 2009 Piedmont Laureate, and winner of the North Carolina Award for Literature
"One word, AMAZING. A powerful, moving collection from a poet at the height of his powers... From passionate lyrics to meditative narratives, Shabazz's poems are peopled with unforgettable characters, real human beings, friends, family, revolutionaries and lost wild men lurking city streets for something more than a handful of change. This book is not a confessional rather a meditation on a life lived and confirms that to be the Phoenix one must first endure the fire, only then can one rise from the ashes."
—Howard L. Craft, poet, playwright
"In a world ruled by indifference in which the glimmer of past embers appear barely visible, Shabazz's words remind us that if we train our eyes to listen, it is obvious for all to see that from Ganazumba to Hotada Francis, from the rage of loss to the reinvention of the soul, from the end of a world to the building of that other world of collective love found in the sweetness of mother's cooking, Black Fire lives on!"
—Alvaro Reyes, Assistant Professor, University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill
In this poetry collection, Phillip Shabazz shares a journey about change, loss, transition, and renewal in many aspects of his life. He embraces the inner and outer fighting spirit of redemption. Flames in the Fire brings narratives both urgent and compelling, lyrics forged by fire, and a message handed down through generations.
Phillip Shabazz engages issues of community, race, and culture in America. He is the author of two collections of poetry, Freestyle and Visitation, and XYZoom. His other work is a novel in verse, When the Grass Was Blue.