What Do I Read Next?
Komunyakaa’s Pulitzer Prize–winning collection Neon Vernacular: New and Selected Poems (1994) includes a generous sampling of Komunyakaa’s previous collections and is perhaps the best collection available that gives the reader a strong overview of his career.
The Jazz Poetry Anthology (1991), edited by Sascha Feinstein and Yusef Komunyakaa, is a two-volume collection of poems, written by a wide range of poets inspired by jazz and the blues.
Two other anthologies worth looking at are Every Shut Eye Ain’t Asleep: An Anthology of Poetry by African Americans Since 1945, edited by Michael S. Harper and Anthony Walton, and Invited Guest: An Anthology of Twentieth-Century Southern Poetry, edited by David Rigsbee and Steven Ford Brown. Both collections provide strong examples of poems in their respective categories and both include pieces by Komunyakaa that help contextualize his work.
Though Komunyakaa appears widely on websites throughout the Internet, the most useful site can be found at http://www.ibiblio.org/ipa/ komunyakaa, a conservancy of available information on art, music, and cultural studies. The site is a collaboration between the Center for the Public Domain and the University of North Carolina–Chapel Hill. The site devotes a page of live recordings, including one of “Ode to a Drum,” as well as critical essays on Komunyakaa’s work.