ChickenBones: A Journal

for  Literary & Artistic African-American  Themes


Home   ChickenBones Store (Books, DVDs, Music, and more)


 Red Beans and Ricely Yours

Poems by Mona Lisa Saloy


Books by Mona Lisa Saloy

Red Beans and Ricely Yours: Poems

*   *   *   *   *

Mona Lisa Saloy Bio

Winner of the PEN Oakland National Literary Award


Updated Bio

Mona Lisa Saloy, Author and Folklorist, was  visiting Associate Professor of English at the University of Washington in Seattle for the 2005-06  year; for 2006-07 academic year.  Because of Katrina, she was on leave from Dillard University where she developed their Creative Writing Program.

Her Ph.D. is in English from Louisiana State University in Baton Rouge where she received the MFA in Creative Writing.  Mona Lisa’s first collection of verse, Red Beans and Ricely Yours: Poems, won the T. S. Eliot Prize in poetry for 2005,  published by Truman State University Press; also, this collection was finalist for the Morgan Prize from StoryLine Press.  Dr. Saloy’s verse appears in the  anthology: Furious Flower: African American Poetry from the Black Arts Movement to the Present.  Joanne V. Gabbin, editor.  Charlottesville: University of Virginia Press, 2004.   Occasionally, Mona Lisa writes and reads commentaries on the Black  historical 7th Ward neighborhood in New Orleans for Public Radio, WWNO, 89.9 fm.  Some of Saloy’s articles on Toasts, and the Lore of African American children are available on the Web at the Louisiana Division of the Arts, Folklife site.

Saloy won fellowships from the National Endowment for the Humanities and from the United Negro College Fund/Andrew W. Mellon Foundation to continue her research on Black Beat poet Bob Kaufman, who served as an important link to the Black arts movement.  Her article “Black Beats and Black Issues,” appears in Beat Culture and the New America 1950-1965. Lisa Phillips, editor.  New York: Whitney Museum of American Art, 1995.

Mona Lisa Saloy was Keynote Speaker at Re-Building New Orleans Conference at Tulane University; Writer in Residence at the Arna Bontemps Museum in Alexandria, Louisiana;  and guest writer at University of Missouri in  2005; since then, she was  featured writer at the Zora Neale Hurston Festival, at Santa Barbara Community College, and DeBose Festival featured writer  in 2006.

*   *   *   *   *

An Extended Bio

Ms Saloy won fellowships from the National Endowment for the Humanities and from the United Negro College Fund/Andrew W. Mellon Foundation to continue her research on Black Beat poet Bob Kaufman, who served as an important link to the Black arts movement. She received the M.F.A. at Louisiana Sate University in Baton Rouge, the M.A. in Creative Writing at San Francisco State University, and the B.A. at the University of Washington in Seattle.

Mona Lisa Saloys most recent publication of prose is in "A Night in St. Tammany Parish," Callaloo. 24.1(2001)162-163. Her scholarship on the Beats appears in "Black Beats and Black Issues," Beat Culture and the New America: 1950-1965. Lisa Phillips, ed. NY: The Whitney Museum of American Art, 1995.153-165. Her recent ethnographic articles are "Still Laughing to Keep from Crying: Black Humor," Louisiana Folklife Festival Guide. Monroe & Baton Rouge: Louisiana Division of Folklife, 2001. 14-15; and "New Orleans Lagniappe: Terms of our Endearment," Ties that Bind: Making Family New Orleans Style. New Orleans: Ashé Cultural Center and Ebon Images, 2001.53-59. She is included in My Mother Had a Dream, African-American Women Share Their Mother’s Words of Wisdom. Tamara Nikuradse, ed. New York: Dutton, the Penguin Group, 1996.

Ms Saloy’s verse appears most recently in "Word Works" a film by Betsy Weiss, part of Poets in the Dream State: An Anthology of Louisiana Writers, NOVAC 2001. Louisiana English Journal, 1(7)2000; Cultural Vistas 11.2(2000)83; Louisiana Literature, 1999; Double Dealer Redux 1998; Ishmael Reed’s Konch,1997.

Some of Mona Lisa Saloy's poems appear in Immortelles, Poems of Life and Death by New Southern Writers, New Orleans: Xavier Review Press, 1995, and in 1994 The Southern Review. She is featured in The American Poetry Archives’ Color: A Sampling of Contemporary African American Writers, 1994. Others include Louisiana English Journal, 1994; African American Review, 1993. She is in the seminal Louisiana Women Writers, New Essays and a Comprehensive Bibliography, edited by Brown and Ewell, from LSU Press, 1992. Ms. Saloy's previously published poems appear in the following: Word Up, Black Poetry of the 80s from the Deep South, The Black Scholar, The Haight Ashberry Literary Journal, Dark Waters, Testimony, Louisiana Laurels, and others.

Previous awards are the 1993 Delta Sigma Theta's ARTIE, and the 1989 "Arts Excellence Award" in literature; in 1984, a National Endowment for the Arts supported post as Poet-in-Residence at the San Francisco African American Historical and Cultural Society. Mona Lisa Saloy was a Poet-in-the-Schools in Washington State, California, and Louisiana where she developed the successful Arts in Education program for the Arts Council of Greater Baton Rouge. In addition, she has collected and published folklore research on kids' lore and adult male lore in Louisiana and Michigan. Mona Lisa Saloy is on the Advisory Board of the Tennessee Williams/New Orleans Literary Festival.

Mona Lisa says that she writes to speak for those who don't, to learn their lessons, and to celebrate their spirits.

*   *   *   *   *

Mona Lisa Saloy is associate professor of English and Founding Director of Creative Writing at Dillard University, and Director of The Daniel C. Thompson/Samuel Du Bois Honors Program.  Dr. Saloy's first collection of verse, Red Beans and Ricely Yours: Poems, won the T. S. Eliot Prize in poetry for 2005, published by Truman State University Press. She has also won fellowship from the National Endowment for the Humanities and from the United Negro College Fund/Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. Her poems have appeared in anthologies, magazines, journals, and film. She received her PhD in English and MFA in creative writing from Louisiana State University and her MA in creative writing and English from San Francisco State University. Displaced by Hurricane Katrina, Saloy was a visiting associate professor of English and creative writing at the University of Washington for the 2005/2006 academic year. 

*   *   *   *   *

*   *   *   *   *'s 25 Best Selling Books



#1 - Justify My Thug by Wahida Clark
#2 - Flyy Girl by Omar Tyree
#3 - Head Bangers: An APF Sexcapade by Zane
#4 - Life Is Short But Wide by J. California Cooper
#5 - Stackin' Paper 2 Genesis' Payback by Joy King
#6 - Thug Lovin' (Thug 4) by Wahida Clark
#7 - When I Get Where I'm Going by Cheryl Robinson
#8 - Casting the First Stone by Kimberla Lawson Roby
#9 - The Sex Chronicles: Shattering the Myth by Zane

#10 - Covenant: A Thriller  by Brandon Massey

#11 - Diary Of A Street Diva  by Ashley and JaQuavis

#12 - Don't Ever Tell  by Brandon Massey

#13 - For colored girls who have considered suicide  by Ntozake Shange

#14 - For the Love of Money : A Novel by Omar Tyree

#15 - Homemade Loves  by J. California Cooper

#16 - The Future Has a Past: Stories by J. California Cooper

#17 - Player Haters by Carl Weber

#18 - Purple Panties: An Anthology by Sidney Molare

#19 - Stackin' Paper by Joy King

#20 - Children of the Street: An Inspector Darko Dawson Mystery by Kwei Quartey

#21 - The Upper Room by Mary Monroe

#22 – Thug Matrimony  by Wahida Clark

#23 - Thugs And The Women Who Love Them by Wahida Clark

#24 - Married Men by Carl Weber

#25 - I Dreamt I Was in Heaven - The Rampage of the Rufus Buck Gang by Leonce Gaiter


#1 - Malcolm X: A Life of Reinvention by Manning Marable
#2 - Confessions of a Video Vixen by Karrine Steffans
#3 - Dear G-Spot: Straight Talk About Sex and Love by Zane
#4 - Letters to a Young Brother: MANifest Your Destiny by Hill Harper
#5 - Peace from Broken Pieces: How to Get Through What You're Going Through by Iyanla Vanzant
#6 - Selected Writings and Speeches of Marcus Garvey by Marcus Garvey
#7 - The Ebony Cookbook: A Date with a Dish by Freda DeKnight
#8 - The Isis Papers: The Keys to the Colors by Frances Cress Welsing
#9 - The Mis-Education of the Negro by Carter Godwin Woodson

#10 - John Henrik Clarke and the Power of Africana History  by Ahati N. N. Toure

#11 - Fail Up: 20 Lessons on Building Success from Failure by Tavis Smiley

#12 -The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness by Michelle Alexander

#13 - The Black Male Handbook: A Blueprint for Life by Kevin Powell

#14 - The Other Wes Moore: One Name, Two Fates by Wes Moore

#15 - Why Men Fear Marriage: The Surprising Truth Behind Why So Many Men Can't Commit  by RM Johnson

#16 - Black Titan: A.G. Gaston and the Making of a Black American Millionaire by Carol Jenkins

#17 - Brainwashed: Challenging the Myth of Black Inferiority by Tom Burrell

#18 - A New Earth: Awakening to Your Life's Purpose by Eckhart Tolle

#19 - John Oliver Killens: A Life of Black Literary Activism by Keith Gilyard

#20 - Alain L. Locke: The Biography of a Philosopher by Leonard Harris

#21 - Age Ain't Nothing but a Number: Black Women Explore Midlife by Carleen Brice

#22 - 2012 Guide to Literary Agents by Chuck Sambuchino
#23 - Chicken Soup for the Prisoner's Soul by Tom Lagana
#24 - 101 Things Every Boy/Young Man of Color Should Know by LaMarr Darnell Shields

#25 - Beyond the Black Lady: Sexuality and the New African American Middle Class  by Lisa B. Thompson

*   *   *   *   *

The Last Holiday: A Memoir

By Gil Scott Heron

Shortly after we republished The Vulture and The Nigger Factory, Gil started to tell me about The Last Holiday, an account he was writing of a multi-city tour that he ended up doing with Stevie Wonder in late 1980 and early 1981. Originally Bob Marley was meant to be playing the tour that Stevie Wonder had conceived as a way of trying to force legislation to make Martin Luther King's birthday a national holiday. At the time, Marley was dying of cancer, so Gil was asked to do the first six dates. He ended up doing all 41. And Dr King's birthday ended up becoming a national holiday ("The Last Holiday because America can't afford to have another national holiday"), but Gil always felt that Stevie never got the recognition he deserved and that his story needed to be told. The first chapters of this book were given to me in New York when Gil was living in the Chelsea Hotel. Among the pages was a chapter called Deadline that recounts the night they played Oakland, California, 8 December; it was also the night that John Lennon was murdered. Gil uses Lennon's violent end as a brilliant parallel to Dr King's assassination and as a biting commentary on the constraints that sometimes lead to newspapers getting things wrong. —Jamie Byng, Guardian / Gil_reads_"Deadline" (audio)

*   *   *   *   *

And So It Goes: Kurt Vonnegut: A Life

By Charles J. Shields

A New York Times Notable Book for 2011—A Washington Post Notable Nonfiction Book for 2011—The first authoritative biography of Kurt Vonnegut Jr., a writer who changed the conversation of American literature. In 2006, Charles Shields reached out to Kurt Vonnegut in a letter, asking for his endorsement for a planned biography. The first response was no ("A most respectful demurring by me for the excellent writer Charles J. Shields, who offered to be my biographer"). Unwilling to take no for an answer, propelled by a passion for his subject, and already deep into his research, Shields wrote again and this time, to his delight, the answer came back: "O.K." For the next year—a year that ended up being Vonnegut's last—Shields had access to Vonnegut and his letters. And So It Goes is the culmination of five years of research and writing—the first-ever biography of the life of Kurt Vonnegut. Vonnegut resonates with readers of all generations from the baby boomers who grew up with him to high-school and college students who are discovering his work for the first time. Vonnegut's concise collection of personal essays, Man Without a Country, published in 2006, spent fifteen weeks on the New York Times bestseller list and has sold more than 300,000 copies to date. The twenty-first century has seen interest in and scholarship about Vonnegut's works grow even stronger, and this is the first book to examine in full the life of one of the most influential iconoclasts of his timeSlaughterhouse Five

*   *   *   *   *

The White Masters of the World

From The World and Africa, 1965

By W. E. B. Du Bois

W. E. B. Du Bois’ Arraignment and Indictment of White Civilization (Fletcher)

*   *   *   *   *

Ancient African Nations

*   *   *   *   *

If you like this page consider making a donation

online through PayPal

*   *   *   *   *

Negro Digest / Black World

Browse all issues

1950        1960        1965        1970        1975        1980        1985        1990        1995        2000 ____ 2005        


*   *   *   *   *

The Death of Emmett Till by Bob Dylan  The Lonesome Death of Hattie Carroll  Only a Pawn in Their Game

Rev. Jesse Lee Peterson Thanks America for Slavery / George Jackson  / Hurricane Carter

*   *   *   *   *

The Journal of Negro History issues at Project Gutenberg

The Haitian Declaration of Independence 1804  / January 1, 1804 -- The Founding of Haiti 

*   *   *   *   *

*   *   *   *   *

ChickenBones Store (Books, DVDs, Music, and more)







update 11 February 2012




Home  Mona Lisa Saloy Table