Crystal Wilkinson, Kentucky’s Poet Laureate, is the award-winning author of Perfect Black, The Birds of Opulence , Water Street and Blackberries, Blackberries. She is the recipient of a 2021 O. Henry Prize, a 2020 USA Artists Fellowship, and a 2016 Ernest J. Gaines Prize for Literary Excellence. Nominated for the John Dos Passos Award, the Orange Prize and the Hurston/Wright Legacy Award, she has received recognition from the Yaddo Foundation, Hedgebrook, The Vermont Studio Center for the Arts, Hedgebrook, and others. Her short stories, poems and essays have appeared in numerous journals and anthologies including most recently in The Kenyon Review, STORY, Agni Literary Journal, Emergence, Oxford American and Southern Cultures. Her fourth book Perfect Black is forthcoming from University Press of Kentucky in August 2021. She currently teaches at the University of Kentucky where she is Associate Professor of English in the MFA in Creative Writing Program. (from Wilkinson’s website)
WOW! This unit created by Jessica and Karla has 41 pages of full of lessons, pre-reading guides, graphic organizers, mentor text poems, poem pairings, culminating lessons – there is SO MUCH here!
Even if you don’t plan on teaching the whole book, which we highly encourage you to do, these lessons could all stand alone as individual poetry lessons! Learn more about Wilkinson’s work on her website.
Here is a PDF copy of the entire unit created by Jessica and Karla.
And here is a Google Doc of the unit you can download and save to send out to your students.