The 2018 Retreat Album

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Cave Canem’s week-long retreat, held annually at the University of Pittsburgh at Greensburg, offers an unparalleled opportunity for Black poets to study with a world-class faculty and join a community of peers.

This year’s faculty comprised Guggenheim awardee, Chris Abani; Cave Canem co-founder, Cornelius Eady; 2018 Pulitzer Prize finalist, Evie Shockley; and 2004 Cave Canem Poetry Prize winner, Amber Flora Thomas. Los Angeles Poet Laureate, Robin Coste Lewis, was the 2018 guest poet.

Below we document some memorable moments from the 2018 retreat.

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Cornelius Eady and Evie Shockley alongside fellows Essence London and Dustin Pearson (top) following a reading and conversation. Fellows (bottom) listen intently to readings by Cornelius Eady and Evie Shockley.


Cornelius Eady (left) and Evie Shockley (right) engage in a moderated conversation with graduate fellow and retreat coordinator, Dante Micheaux (middle).


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Fellows Brionne Janae, Malcolm Tariq and Kush Thompson (counter clockwise from top) present original work in one of two fellows’ readings.


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Cave Canem faculty Chris Abani and Amber Flora Thomas (bottom), as well as guest poet Robin Coste Lewis (top right) read at City of Asylum/Pittsburgh. They are later joined by Evie Shockley (top left) for a group photo.



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Following the craft talk at City of Asylum, Dante Micheaux (top left) participates in the Q & A; fellow Jessica Lanay (top right) takes notes during the reading; fellow Raymond Antrobus (bottom left) looks on while Robin Coste Lewis delivers her craft talk; and graduate fellows and faculty (bottom left) gather for a group photo.

2018 retreat group photo

A Cave Canem retreat annual tradition, 2018 fellows, faculty and staff gather at Athena steps for a final group photo at the end of the week.