Information about Reggie Scott Young's academic books and scholarly publications
“From the Cold War to the New Millennium, from the Bluesville section of Chicago to the bayous of south Louisiana, Reggie Scott Young takes his readers on a wild ride through half a century of American experience. The hot-button topics of race, class, religion, gender, family, and politics are all fair game to his observant eye and honest pen. Nothing is sacred to this poet, not even Abraham Lincoln or his own preacher-father’s extramarital affairs. In the democratic spirit of Whitman, Sandburg, Brooks, and Hughes, Young sends forth his ‘barbaric squawk’ at the moon, resulting in poems that are direct, alive, necessary, and memorable.”
Julie Kane, former Poet Laureate of Louisiana and author of
Paper Bullets and Rhythm and Booze
"Reggie Scott Young gives us one fine poem after another about both the triumphs and tragedies of ordinary black folk, speaking to us in a voice that is as homespun as it is hard-edged, a voice that is fully in tune with African American musical idioms, namely gospel, the blues, and jazz. A way of saying that Young is that rare worker of the Word who can heart the beats of the human heart, however loud or faint, however near or far."
Jeffery Renard Allen, author of the novels Song of the Shank and
Rails Under My Back
“Reading these poems, prayer songs to the god of justice. I say Amen!”
Sandra Cisneros, author of House on Mango Street and
Looking for Marie
“The many thousands gone lift their eyes to rebirth in this witnessing-Yardbirds Squawking at the Moon where the words are the gift of celebration, each one a treasure made golden by a life lived with an eye to the gift. The poems in this collection bear the precious seal of a generation that saw the second emancipation of black folk and built a fortress against reprisals aimed at a culture whose faith was forged in prophecies many have forgotten. Young’s eye is the eye next to the ear listening to the sounds of tracks being laid in a necessary history in a necessary time. This poet’s heart is rooted in a love of what it is to be black, to be human, to be a man.”
—Afaa Michael. Weaver, Author of City of Eternal Spring and
Multitudes: Poems Selected & New
"Young’s poetry has roots that penetrate deep down into the earth so that each poem feels grounded in a specific moment that is both national and deeply personal. But roots can be dangerous, and Young’s poems can be dangerous too. These roots wander and run, they go so deep that they pierce the memories and fears we thought were long buried and forgotten. The poems in Yardbirds Squawkin at the Moon breathe and yearn, they damn and incant, they beat like a heart and lull you to dream, which is to say, they live."
Wiley Cash, New York Times Best Selling Author of A Land More Kind than Home and This Dark Road to Mercy