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In 1978, Nikki Giovanni, a decade-plus into her celebrated career as a poet and major figure in the black renaissance in American poetry, issued Cotton Candy On A Rainy Day. Critics called it depressing, but any girl who has read it knows it’s just the realest real talk. When I was 13, I found this book on my mom’s shelf. It was the first poem I’d ever read that I connected to and it made me realize poetry was and could be something beyond kiddie rhymes and white dudes who’d been dead 300 years already. 
—Jessica H.

In 1978, Nikki Giovanni, a decade-plus into her celebrated career as a poet and major figure in the black renaissance in American poetry, issued Cotton Candy On A Rainy Day. Critics called it depressing, but any girl who has read it knows it’s just the realest real talk. When I was 13, I found this book on my mom’s shelf. It was the first poem I’d ever read that I connected to and it made me realize poetry was and could be something beyond kiddie rhymes and white dudes who’d been dead 300 years already. 

—Jessica H.

Filed under nikki giovanni cotton candy on a rainy day national poetry day

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    -Nikki Giovanni
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