From Our Soundbooth | October 15, 2019

We are so excited to share with you the 2019 Miller Audio Prize Runner-Up in Poetry: “Moses Boys” by Rohan Ayinde, selected by 2019 Guest Judge Cher Vincent. The Miller Audio Prize is a Spring contest that awards winners and runners-up in the four genres of poetry, prose, humor, and audio documentary.

About “Moses Boys,” Ayinde told us:

These three poems are connected by where I grew up and the stories that ground my experience there in a plethora of ways. What I try to communicate through these pieces is the complexity of experiences that are, too often, framed as singular and/or monolithic. What does it mean to add fragments to the stories we tell, to be able to talk about the mandem as boys, as young men, as malleable subjects whose lives are in process, no different from anyone else other than the contexts out of which they come into being? I think of these poems as moving tableaus, unfixed from the moments that reveal them and emblematic of the ways that we struggle through and come to understand ourselves and the people around us. They are for young black boys who still have to fight for recognition as subjects – caught in the space between ideology and reality and the manifold ways in which that leaves an imprint on their/our lives.

Listen to “Moses Boys” below:

Rohan Ayinde is a Chicago based artist, writer and curator. A recent Masters graduate from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago he is the recipient of the New Artist Society Scholarship and The MA Visual and Critical Studies Graduate Fellowship Award. His interdisciplinary work is centered around creating “otherwise” potentials (Ashon Crawley) and in so doing breaking down and simultaneously reconfiguring the ideological architectures that shape our daily and generational lives. Most often the landscapes he explores are rooted in questions about quantum physics, black radical aesthetics and architecture. Rohan is a 2020 Curatorial Fellow with ACRE and has work forthcoming in a publication by Green Lantern Press.