September 21, 2021 06:00 p.m.

Tongo Eisen-Martin in conversation with Sonia Sanchez

Price: Free (Registration Required)

Tongo Eisen-Martin celebrates the release of his new book of poems, Blood on the Fog, volume 62 in the City Lights Pocket Poets Series, in conversation with Sonia Sanchez. Hosted by the Museum of the African Diaspora.

Register Buy Book

This is a virtual event that will be hosted by City Lights on the Zoom platform. You will need access to a device that is capable of navigating the internet. If you have not used Zoom before, you may consider referencing Getting Started with Zoom.


Tongo Eisen-Martin celebrates the release of his new book of poems, Blood on the Fog, volume 62 in the City Lights Pocket Poets Series, in conversation with Sonia Sanchez.

A virtual event hosted by the Museum of the African Diaspora and co-sponsored by City Lights Booksellers & Publishers and the City Lights Foundation.

A rhapsodic follow-up to Tongo Eisen-Martin’s Heaven is All Goodbyes, this collection further explores themes of love and loss, family and faith, refracted through the lens of Black experience. These poems honor intellectual tradition and ancestral knowledge while blazing an entirely new path, recording and replaying the poet’s sensory travels through America, from its packed metropolises to desolate anytowns. Packed with politically astute and clear-eyed takes on race and class, filled with wisdom and great humanity, these poems perform mind-bending leaps and wander down back alleys to arrive at their moment of ultimate truth.

Praise for Blood on the Fog:

Continuing the lofty tradition of Langston Hughes, June Jordan, and Amiri Baraka, Tongo Eisen-Martin has emerged on center stage as today’s premier revolutionary poet. A master craftsman and a sensitive artist, he reserves his sledgehammer words for the cruelty of imperialism. He should not only be read–he should be studied.–Gerald Horne

“In Blood on the Fog, find a poetry of ‘swinging type body language’ where the swinging swings like Ellington and Ali combined, knocking you out inside and out, and turning you around in this extraordinary book.”–Terrance Hayes

“Black poetry has got to get its head around the deranged way language and the world expect us to be and live again. Tongo has figured this out, is feeling out how to vein the poem with his own life, and that’s why I love his work.”–Simone White

“This is no precious, immortal-aspirational monologue; no autocrat stone of finality; no poor folks as thought experiments. More fugue than state. More disturbance as the groove. If poems are for anything, I feel like it must be this.”–Justin Phillip Reed

“Blood on the Fog is the illest artifact of time travel I’ve ever experienced. Tongo Eisen-Martin takes us to a tomorrow and yesterday where we stand–contorted and mangled–but oh so beautiful, faithful and free.”–Kiese Laymon

“Whether speaking rhyme in slant, calling forward Medgar Evers, or the spirituality of an oppressed people, Eisen-Martin offers stanza after stanza as a sunrise. Each poem leads us towards our liberation. This means these poems are heavy in their desire to free our current state of stoic apathy. This means Tongo Eisen-Martin’s poetic legacy will live forever.”–Mahogany L. Browne


Related Title

Blood on the Fog
Tongo Eisen-Martin
City Lights Books


Event Details

Date: September 21, 2021

Start time: 06:00 p.m. PDT

Venue: Zoom

Phone: 415-362-8193


Tune in to the City Lights podcast for recordings of our recent events, and an archive of past highlights. Subscribe on Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts or Stitcher.

City Lights Events are sponsored by the City Lights Foundation

Skip to content