Poetry is the Skeleton Architecture of Our Lives
Poetry is not only dream and vision; it is the skeleton architecture of our lives. It lays the foundation for a future of change, a bridge across our fears of what has never been before.
—Audre Lorde, “Poetry Is Not a Luxury,” Sister Outsider: Essays and Speeches
Audre Lorde understood poetry as a vital part of human existence—a tool that allows us to give shape to feelings through language, and then transpose those innate emotions into transformative action. The poetry and prose of the self-described “black, lesbian, feminist, mother, warrior, poet,” which includes books The First Cities, Cables to Rage, Coal, The Black Unicorn, The Cancer Journals, and Sister Outsider, focuses on challenging oppression and ultimately empowering others by expressing her most authentic self. Lorde’s work made her an important figure in political movements for civil rights, women’s liberation, and gay and lesbian liberation. She was also a librarian and professor, the founder of Kitchen Table: Women of Color Press, and the Poet Laureate of New York State.