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DJ Renegade (“Time’s
Up,” 9/20) need not fret over some of his untimely scores at the past two National Poetry Slam competitions. William Jelani Cobb paints an accurate if not poignant portrait of the artistic sacrifice that is endured by many an aspiring artist or artist-to-be. In this case it was a poet whose life was laid bare for his peers to admire and for others to say,
Cobb’s cover story was complete and held nothing back. Maybe the only thing he left out was his penchant for writing with one specific style pen. Unlike other stories I’ve read that were riddled with inaccuracies and misleading inferences, specifically “Hard Corps” by Ta-Nehisi Coates (7/19), Cobb introduces one of D.C.’s leading bards with all his baggage. I was encouraged by his self-motivation and his passion for learning, both qualities that students nowadays would do well to follow.
Renegade’s fate as a poet, mainly that he was what he was until poetry took its place within his life, serves as witness to all those who could have and never did. Thank you for highlighting one of the area’s best poets, not because of what he did or did not do but because of who he is. In this case both situations coincide and help me to see a fellow poet in a different shade.