Tongo Eisen-Martin

Tongo Eisen-Martin's picture
Photo credit: 
Shalom Bower

Born in San Francisco, the poet, movement worker, and educator Tongo Eisen-Martin is the author of the books someone’s dead already and Heaven Is All Goodbyes, which won the California Book Award for poetry and was nominated for the Griffin Poetry Prize. The Griffin Prize judges praised how his work “moves between trenchant political critique and dreamlike association, demonstrating how, in the right hands, one mode might energize the other — keeping alternative orders of meaning alive in the face of radical injustice.” He has taught in detention centres at Rikers Island, San Quentin, and California county jails and has been a faculty member at Columbia University.