Safia Elhillo

Safia Elhillo seeks your poems as her work heads to Winter Olympics

Sudanese American poet Safia Elhillo seeks your poetry for a new anthology 20.35 Africa: An Anthology of Contemporary Poetry. Her work has also featured as part of the Under Amour campaign for Lindsey Vonn at the Winter Olympics.

Safia Elhillo is a Sudanese-American poet who first came to our attention when she won the Brunel University African Poetry Prize 2015 jointly with Nick Makoha. Since then, she has finished her MFA in poetry from The New School in New York City teaches at Split This Rock. She is also the poet behind the book The January Children. Apart from writing and teaching, she also given kickass slam poetry performances all around the world sharing the stage with poets like Sonia Sanchez.

Safia Elhillo is part of the team behind the new The 20.35 Africa: An Anthology of Contemporary Poetry which hopes to identify the best poets from Africa who would present an outlook of contemporary and future voices, and make such poetry accessible and available to African readers. Apart from Elhillo, the other editor for the upcoming anthology is Gbenga Adesina, who won the Brunel International African Poetry Prize 2016. For more about this upcoming poetry anthology click here for terms and conditions.

Elhillo also shared on her social media platforms that her work has been referenced for the campaign of alpine skier Lindsey Vonn who will be competing at the Winter Olympics starting tomorrow in Pyeongchang, South Korea.  Under Armour is an American company that manufactures footwear, sports and casual apparel is the sponsor of players like Granit Xhaka (Arsenal FC) and Stephen Curry (Golden State Warriors).

The “Unlike Any” campaign is five films which feature spoken word artists who created poems to fit stories of each of five athletes and this is where our Safia Elhillo meets with US alpine skier Vonn. It’s not exactly being referenced by Beyonce but she seems pretty chuffed with her nominal involvement with the upcoming games. As are we all for her.

Check out the poetry in the video below.



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