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Crosscurrents is our award-winning radio news magazine, broadcasting Mondays through Thursdays at 11 a.m. on 91.7 FM. We make joyful, informative stories that engage people across the economic, social, and cultural divides in our community. Listen to full episodes at kalw.org/crosscurrents

San Francisco Poet Laureate Tongo Eisen-Martin Wants To Give People Power Through Publishing

San Francisco Poet Laureate Tongo Eisen-Martin
Photo provided by Tongo Eisen-Martin
San Francisco Poet Laureate Tongo Eisen-Martin

San Francisco Laureate Tongo Eisen-Martin usually takes center stage. Now he has a new role behind the scenes — publisher.

Tongo is a California Book Award and American Book Award winner and the co-founder of Black Freighter Press. He's shared the literary stage with the likes of icons such asSonia Sanchez.

In this interview, he gives his take on the social and political climate during COVID-19, why he decided to launch a press with a colleague, and publishing the late Q.R Hand Jr.'s final book of poetry.

Click the play button above to listen.

Jeneé Darden is an award-winning journalist, author, public speaker and proud Oakland native. She is the executive producer and host of the weekly arts segment Sights & Sounds as well as the series Sights + Sounds Magazine. Jeneé also covers East Oakland for KALW. Jeneé has reported for NPR, Marketplace, KQED, KPCC, The Los Angeles Times, Ebony magazine, Refinery29 and other outlets. In 2005, she reported on the London transit bombings for Time magazine. Prior to coming to KALW, she hosted the podcast Mental Health and Wellness Radio.