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Kelly Harris-DeBerry

"I wish you water/a cool spine of river/bending you/but never breaking..."


Kelly Harris-DeBerry is an award-winning poet and the author of Freedom Knows My Name. Her poems have been published in various publications including: Yale University's Caduceus Journal, Southern Voices and more.  In 2022, her poem, “Post-Katrina Blues”  was translated and displayed in Germany. A nationally respected arts consultant, Kelly supports various festivals, conferences and organizations. Kelly served as a literary coordinator for Poets & Writers Inc. She was a guest poetry editor for Bayou Magazine. Currently, she is the poetry mentor for Literary Cleveland’s Breakthrough Writing Residency and serves as a national advisor to Literary Maps, a national initiative of the National Endowment for the Arts and The Smithsonian. In April 2023, Kelly's work will be featured in a national book on Black women in philanthropy in which she authors the sections on New Orleans and Ohio. She is the recipient of fellowships from the Fine Arts Work Center and Cave Canem, and earned degrees from Kent State University and Lesley University. 

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