Recipient of Individual Artist Awards for both poetry and fiction from the Maryland State Arts Council and a Pushcart Prize nominee, Reginald Harris is Poetry in the Branches Coordinator and Information Technology Director for Poets House in New York City. His first book, 10 Tongues (2001) was finalist for a Lambda Literary Award and the ForeWord Book of the Year. A Cave Canem fellow and Associate Editor for the Lambda Literary Foundation's Literary Review, his poetry, fiction, reviews, and articles have appeared in numerous journals and websites, including 5 AM, African-American Review, Gargoyle, Sou'wester; and the anthologies Best Gay Poetry 2008 and The Ringing Ear: Black Poets Lean South.
Winner of the Cave Canem Northwestern University Press Poetry Prize
In his second collection of poetry, Reginald Harris traverses real and imagined landscapes, searching for answers to the question “What are you?” From Baltimore to Havana, Atlantic City to Alabama—and from the broad memories of childhood to the very specific moment of Marvin Gaye singing at the 1983 NBA All-Star Game shortly before his death—this is a travel diary of internal and external journeys exploring issues of race and sexuality.
"Auto meaning self or same, and Geography meaning earth writing. In Autogeography, Harris explores the geographies that have written his identity as an African American and as a gay male. His stylistically diverse collection is personal, contemporary, marked by the rhythms of African American music, inventive, and filled with a disarming wit.... This is poetry that wants to speak to readers and not above them. He walks the streets you walk, sees the people you see, feels—especially in "The Lost Boys: A Requiem"— the same heart-breaking despair over the plight of African American males (drugs, violence, AIDS, urban ruin) that you feel. Harris is driving and readers are lucky to be in the passenger seat."
“In Autogeography, Harris gives us the gift of quickening the treasure of black culture in poems that touch the enduring spirit of black people. He has baptized himself in that significant and signifying wellspring, the song of the African American quotidian. The poet celebrates black life and the way it connects to humanity, the bright woven cloth of all our lives. This book is the hoodoo ring shout call and response for love.”
—Afaa Michael Weaver
Northwestern University Press