DéLana R.A. Dameron is an artist who believes in the power of storytelling to move people and resources to cultural missions. And with REDWOOD COURT, her breathtaking debut novel about an unforgettable Southern Black family,
she now reaches an even wider audience in fulfillment of her mission.
The Columbus Public Library will welcome Ms. Dameron to it's Auditorium on Thursday February 22 at 6:00pm for a free presentation and book-signing. Copies of REDWOOD COURT will be available for purchase.
“A triumph . . . Redwood Court is storytelling at its best: tender, vivid, and richly complicated.”—Jacqueline Woodson, New York Times bestselling author of Red at the Bone
“Mika, you sit at our feet all these hours and days, hearing us tell our tales. You have all these stories inside you: all the stories everyone in our family knows and all the stories everyone in our family tells. You write ’em in your books and show everyone who we are.”
So begins award-winning poet DéLana R. A. Dameron’s debut novel, REDWOOD COURT. The baby of the family, Mika Tabor spends much of her time in the care of loved ones, listening to their stories and witnessing their struggles. On Redwood Court, the cul-de-sac in the all-Black working-class suburb of Columbia, South Carolina, where her grandparents live, Mika learns important lessons from the people who raise her: her exhausted parents, who work long hours at multiple jobs while still making sure their kids experience the adventure of family vacations; her older sister, who in a house filled with Motown would rather listen to Alanis Morrisette; her retired grandparents, children of Jim Crow, who realized their own vision of success when they bought their house on the Court in the 1960s, imagining it filled with future generations; and the many neighbors who hold tight to the community they’ve built, committed to fostering joy and love in an America so insistent on seeing Black people stumble and fall.
With visceral clarity and powerful prose, Dameron reveals the devastation of being made to feel invisible and the transformative power of being seen. REDWOOD COURT is a celebration of extraordinary, ordinary people striving to achieve their own American dreams.
DéLana R.A. Dameron is an artist who believes in the power of storytelling to move people and resources to cultural missions.
As a writer, Ms. Dameron's second collection of poems Weary Kingdom (2017) is part of the University of South Carolina Palmetto Poetry Series, edited by Nikky Finney. Her debut collection How God Ends Us (2009) was selected by Elizabeth Alexander for the 2008 South Carolina Poetry Book Prize. She has conducted readings, workshops and lectures all across the United States, Central America and Europe. In addition to a Bachelor of Arts in History, Ms. Dameron holds a Master of Fine Arts in Poetry from New York University where she was a Goldwater Hospital Writer’s workshop fellow, and was named the 2018 Summer Poet in Residence at the University of Mississippi, Oxford.
As a creative culture-maker with more than 15 years of experience, her storytelling practice forms the bedrock of her fundraising expertise and organizational strategy for cultural institutions and projects so that they can continue to bring beauty into the world, build up our communities, and provide meaningful spaces for cultural + artistic transformation.