under the aegis of a winged mind (Paperback)

under the aegis of a winged mind By makalani bandele Cover Image
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The poems in under the aegis of a winged mind are inspired by the life and times of the jazz composer and pianist Earl “Bud” Powell. Powell was a leading figure in the development of jazz, but throughout his life, he also faced struggles with police brutality, harassment, drug and alcohol abuse, and mental illness. In this collection, makalani bandele explores Powell’s life through a blend of both formal and free verse persona poems. These poems are multivocal, with the speaker often embodying Powell himself and sometimes a close friend or family member, the spectator of a performance, or a fellow musician.

While the book follows the narrative of Powell’s life, the poems are experimental in form and presentation. Playing with, reinventing, and restructuring poetic form, bandele draws on blues and jazz music theory to serve as a basis for much of the work’s construction. He uses language to recreate the experience of music itself, and his poetry includes a multitude of references and allusion to music lyrics and other poems. As the book recounts Powell’s life, it also explores how Black genius has encountered, struggled against, and developed mechanisms to cope with White supremacy in the United States. under the aegis of a winged mind won the 2019 Autumn House Press Poetry Prize.

About the Author

makalani bandele is an MFA candidate at the University of Kentucky and an Affrilachian Poets and Cave Canem fellow. He is the author of Hellfightin, and his work has been included in several anthologies and journals, including African-American Review, Killens Review of Arts and Letters, and Sou’wester. He lives in Lexington, KY.

Praise For…

“William Carlos Williams once wrote that it was difficult to get the news from poetry, but we die from the lack of what is there, and to transpose music, especially African-American music and all it contains into something fresh and revelatory on the page is just as complicated, but makalani bandele proves, page by page, poem by stunning poem, to be up for the task. And what news! under the aegis of a winged mind isn’t a book—it’s a neighborhood, it’s a nation. To quote this fine poet: ‘Just listen.’ makalani bandele is a poet who is just tuning up.”
— Cornelius Eady, author of "Brutal Imagination"

Product Details
ISBN: 9781938769580
ISBN-10: 1938769589
Publisher: Autumn House Press
Publication Date: September 5th, 2020
Pages: 112