Reggie Scott Young
Poet and Writer, Scholar, and Editor
Reggie Scott Young is a former professor of creative writing and American literatures at the University of Louisiana at Lafayette, Wheaton College, LSU, and Villanova University. He is the author of the poetry collection YARDBIRDS SQUAWKING AT THE MOON, and his poems, stories, and essays have appeared in publications such as CHICAGO REVIEW, FIFTH WEDNESDAY JOURNAL, AFRICAN AMERICAN REVIEW, OXFORD AMERICAN, SACRED TRESPASSES, and REVISE THE PALM: CELEBRATING THE WORKS OF GWENDOLYN BROOKS.
Reggie Scott Young's YARDBIRDS SQUAWKING at the MOON
New and Vintage Poems
From the Cold War to the New Millennium, from the Bluesville section of Chicago to the bayous of south Louisiana, Reggie Scott Young takes his readers on a wild ride through half a century of American experience. The hot-button topics of race, class, religion, gender, family, and politics are all fair game to his observant eye and honest pen. Nothing is sacred to this poet, not even Abraham Lincoln or his own preacher-father’s extramarital affairs. In the democratic spirit of Whitman, Sandburg, Brooks, and Hughes, Young sends forth his “barbaric squawk” at the moon, resulting in poems that are direct, alive, necessary. (from download books.live)
New Essays and Stories in These Books
In the last week (October 2019) I received contributor copies for my essay in Summoning Our Saints: The Poetry and Prose of Brenda Marie Osbey, another essay in the MLA's Approaches to Teaching Ernest J. Gaines The Autobiography of Miss Jane Pittman and Other Works, and a prose story in Chicago Review's special issue on The Black Arts Movement in Chicago.
I grew up in an urban neighborhood in which few people read anything other than the Bible (if they were religious) and the daily newspaper. The worth of boys and young men was measured by such factors as their ability to play football, basketball, dance, sing, or "play the ladies." I wasn't good at any of that and maybe that's what led me to develop into a reader and writer. My exposure to literature in high school was mostly limited to Shakespeare's sonnets and one of his plays, along with poems by Keats, Wordsworth, Milton, and Poe, but none of those writers offered mirror reflections of the world in which I lived and none of them wrote in voices and language that were native to me. When I started writing, like so many others in the days before computers and word processing programs, I wrote on pages in spiral-bound notebooks with pencils and pens--when I became more sophisticated I typed my poems and prose sketches on manual typewriters. One of the pieces of furniture I owned when I lived in my first apartment was an old wooden contraption that the telephone company used to transport cables. When the spools were no longer good for service they were often left in alleys for garbage trucks to pick up. I took one home and it served as my first desk. On it I wrote countess college papers and homework assignments for the commuter university I attended, and on it I wrote the early poems I published in magazines such as Spoon River Quarterly and Contact II. It was also on that little uncomfortable table that I wrote the novel that served as my dissertation, one titled Crimes in Bluesville, and that novel helped to launch my career in higher education.