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Afaa M. Weaver, formerly Michael S. Weaver, studied his craft as a poet while working in factories in his native Baltimore, the time of his literary apprenticeship. He has received fellowships from the NEA, the PA Council on the Arts, the Pew Foundation, and the Fulbright Association. Also a playwright, short fiction writer, journalist, translator, and editor, he has published fifteen collections of poetry, the latest of which is Spirit Boxing (U Pitt 2017). His awards include the Kingsley Tufts Award, the Phillis Wheatley Award, and the Gold Friendship Medal from the Beijing Writers Association. He has taught at NYU, CUNY, Rutgers, National Taiwan University (2002 Fulbright Award) and Simmons College. At Simmons he held the Alumnae Endowed Chair for twenty years. In 1998, he was named the first elder of the Cave Canem Organization. Certified as a teacher of Tai Chi Chuan, he holds a first degree black sash from the world Kuoshu Federation. Afaa is currently a member of the core faculty in Drew University’s MFA Program in Poetry and Poetry in Translation. In 2007, his papers became a part of the Howard Gotlieb Archival Research Center at Boston University. In 2017, Afaa received a Guggeheim fellowship in poetry.