Cornelius Eadyb. 1954
Poet and cofounder of Cave Canem, Cornelius Eady has published more than half a dozen volumes of poetry. Music is a central theme of Eady’s work, along with family and the challenges unique to the African American experience. Eady’s ability to examine several stories at once—while paring the lyrical intersections of these lives to moments remarkable in their clarity, exuberance, and vulnerability—has garnered critical acclaim. In 1996 Eady and poet Toi Derricote founded Cave Canem, a nonprofit organization that supports emerging African American poets through a summer retreat, regional workshops, a first-book prize, annual anthologies, and events and readings across the country.