Category Archives: Non-Fiction

Carolivia Herron: Promoting Epic Intersections in art and community

Are you ready for National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo)? DO IT!

And check out my writerly pep talk.

Epics run through my life. I loved Milton as a child. I studied classics, earning a PhD, and taught Epic Literature at major universities. I wrote an epic as a children’s book – Nappy Hair – and left academia to pursue a dream of helping others find the epic story within communities and individuals.

Today I write and help others see the story within them. I travel the country speaking and leading seminars. I work with educators and schools to help reduce absenteeism and increase graduation rates. I talk to Jewish groups about my unusual Jewish Africana history, speaking on topics as varied as “Why I am not going to say anything about Ferguson” or “Banned in Brooklyn: The Judaic Journey of Nappy Hair from Washington DC to New York City.” And I speak about topics connected to my other books, such as the Geechee/Jewish connection in Always An Olivia and the family folklore quality of Little Georgia And the Apples.

I publish others, host a weekly radio show featuring local writers and artists, …. I mentor Washington DC youth as they develop their literary and performing arts skills.


The latest from Carolivia Herron

Book Cover for Peacesong DC

Carolivia’s latest book, Peacesong DC went to press on her 69th birthday, July 22, 2016. Peacesong DC consists of fictionalized autobiographical chapters extracted and amended from Carolivia Herron’s longer work, Asenath and the Origin of Nappy Hair, in order to highlight the Washington DC aspect of the author’s identity.

In Peacesong DC Carolivia’s persona, Shirah Shulamit Ojero has four loves, her African American culture, her Jewish heritage, academic study — especially the study of literary epics — and her city, Washington, DC. Peacesong DC displays the interconnection of these four loves as Shirah grows up in the Washington DC neighborhoods of Mayfair Mansions, Kenilworth, Anacostia, Takoma DC. and downtown.

If you would like to have Carolivia talk about her latest book, contact her at Available for purchase in paperback on Barnes & Noble or papberback and Kindle on Amazon.

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Their House Wants To Breathe

Their house wants to breathe. It wants to shake off boxes of unsorted papers, bags of art supplies for the schools. The house would rather have the books than these white temporary boxes. The books are neat in storage, complete. The incomplete junk fills the house. The mother and the daughter move around junk, stumbling sometimes. Who is going to pick up the junk and throw the stuff away? When will they be able to walk from the hallway through the living room through the dining room through the kitchen to the hallway again, so that the house can breathe?

Broken Circle

“But Achilles, fear the gods and have mercy on me, remembering your father, for I am the most piteous of all men, seeing that I must reach forth and kiss the hand that has killed my son.” The words echo 3000 years. Someone you love is dead. What must you do for comfort. Their next door neighbor died on Monday, after the snow storm. He was the first of the six black blockbuster families to move in. The mother and daughter are of the third family. The six families have rocked steady for 52 years. This death breaks the circle.

Quotation is translated from Homer, Iliad 24:503. See to read Greek and Latin literature online. You can click on each word for a translation and/or read the original side by side with an English translation.

Sisko and Odysseus

It’s night. This day had too many tasks. Maybe the daughter will go to Deep Space Nine on Netflix. Or maybe, she’ll go to Phaeacia on Yes Phaeacia, she has her earphones on and she’s listening to Odysseus talking to Nausicaa among the Phaeacians. There was no time to write this morning. She sent out an invoice. She thought about Marian Anderson. And Beowulf. And a lotus blossom sword. For students. The phone rings. “You’re back! What? No, I’m not bringing a thing to the St. Patrick’s Purim party.” Black. Irish. Jewish. And listening to Odysseus. Sisko is next.