Urban Contemporary History Month by Scott Woods
Pages (Print Edition): 118
In his second full length collection, Scott Woods further interrogates the intersection of identity and society, exposing the frequently imposed and false duality of twenty-first century Black life by a world that prefers its art and people in neat boxes. The poems of Urban Contemporary History Month navigate multiple sides of the issues it raises – police abuse, idol worship, the definition of Black culture, and the importance of the blues chief among them – chipping away at our understanding and acceptance of American life as we know it. The collection includes extended meditations on juke joint culture, art as a communal projection, and a cento comprised entirely of the first lines of Stephen King stories. Both personal and quietly polemic, Urban Contemporary History Month is a sly, knowing collection told with the trademark humor and intellectual nuance Woods is frequently praised for.