Tabs open on your screen right now:

  1. a link to buy a Akatsuki Cosplay Cloak (Naruto)
  2. 2 gmail accounts
  3. a Yohi Yamamoto video called “Tokyo Fashion Express: A Rebel with A Modern Cause”
  4. a video for Yohi Yamamoto at the Royal Ascot Event— “Royal Ascot Style Guide”
  5. Twitter
  6. http://shefonnachelle.bigcartel.com

If you had to brag about yourself:
My first play is going up at Steppenwolf in December 2017 & Anna Shaprio (who directed AUGUST OSAGE COUNTY) on Broadway selected it. So yea. I feel kinda cute about that right there. Also, I got a serious tribe + coven + squad that keeps me planted on Earth & not en route to Saturn in a tragedy. I also have an impressive head shape (I’m currently bald & this is actually a very big deal— what if I had a crazy shaped head?)

Um. I can dance my ass off. & often do.

Your writer crush:
OOOOOOF. Hmm. So many. Def top 5 iteration (there are many iterations):

  1. Patricia Smith
  2. Angel Nafis
  3. Fred Moten
  4. Earnest Hemingway
  5. Douglas Kearny

Favorite lyric:
“bitches/ I like em brainless / guns/ I like em stainless / steel.” — Notorious BIG, “The What”

Any place in the world:
Tokyo. South of France. Chicago. Accra. Johannesburg. Oregon. New Orleans. Prospect Park at 3am.

Best breakfast:
Eggs Benedict w/ salmon & spinach + a glass of brut + an almond milk latte + some rosemary to smell after, like an apretif. I’m incredibly bougie & trying to live into what my homie Nabi calls, “a yung rich nigga lifestyle.”

Favorite online places right now:
Opening Ceremony’s website (not all as terribly expensive as I thought!)

my Facebook timeline sometimes. SOMETIMES.
Party Noire’s website + manifesto
that BBQ spot in Toronto, 1242 Crew, that puts poems on their marquee

Sweetest thing:
my mama’s phone calls once a day when she’s driving to work my partner
my homies text messages & birds of paradise (flowers)

Your rituals (writing or not):
fuck. a LOT OF THINGS. one i’ll share: I got these prayer beads. when i’m stressy or just awake, i count each bead (112) out loud.

lavender candles (Meyer’s)
Hot Pot with Camonghne Felix
Hot Yoga in Queens
a lot of Hot shit, apparently
talking to Monqiue Ruffin, my therapist & spiritual advisor
reading Chani Nicolas’ horoscopes
buying succulents
shea buttering my lil bod
calling my partner
calling Chris Nuñez
seeing plays once every few months (need to see more frequently) reading in the early early mornings (6AM)

Least impressive thing about you:
can’t play spades for shit

Favorite space to write:
my aunt’s kitchen in Queens

What should we know:
how to be kind to people.
also that I can recite whole movies by heart, including the songs + all the song lyrics

Guilty literary pleasure:
Gossip Girl series

Best book nobody talks about:
No Matter How Much You Promise To Cook Or Pay The Rent, You Blew It, Cause Bill Bailey Ain’t Never Coming Home Again— Eduardo Vega Yunqué

Character (TV, book, movie) you most identify with:
Humphrey Bogart, Casablanca

Last time you lied:
I don’t really do that for real for real.

The lie:
Nah, it ain’t exist, I’m serious.

Question you secretly want to be asked:
did you ever really like men? like EVER?

The answer:
eh. twice.


AZIZA BARNES is blk & alive. Winner of the 2015 Pamet River Prize Aziza’s first full length collection i be but i ain’t, is from YesYes Books 2016. They are a Cave Canem Fellow, co-founder of The Conversation Literary Festival and co-host of the podcast, The Poetry Gods.