Photo credit: Farrah Hassen


E. Ethelbert Miller  is a literary activist.  He is the board chairperson of the Institute for Policy Studies (IPS).  He is a board member of The Writer's Center and editor of Poet Lore magazine.  Since 1974, he has been the director of the African American Resource Center at Howard University.  Mr. Miller is the former chair of the Humanities Council of Washington, D.C. and a former core faculty member of the Bennington Writing Seminars at
Bennington College.



He is the author of  the following books:  

Andromeda (1974)

The Land of Smiles and the Land of No Smiles (1974)

Migrant Worker (1978)

Season of Hunger/Cry of Rain (1982)

Where are the Love Poems for Dictators? (1986, reprinted in 2001)

First Light (1994)

  Whispers, Secrets and Promises (1998)

  Fathering Words: The Making of An African American Writer (2000)                               

  Buddha Weeping In Winter (2001)

  How We Sleep On The Nights We Don’t Make Love (2004)

The 5th Inning (2009)

                                 He is the editor of the following anthologies:                                         

Synergy: An Anthology of Washington, D.C. Black Poetry (1975)
Women Surviving Massacres and Men (1977)
In Search of Color Everywhere (1994)

Beyond the Frontier (2002)


In 1979, the Mayor of Washington, DC proclaimed September 28, 1979 as 
“E. Ethelbert Miller Day.” Mr. Miller was awarded the Mayor’s Art Award for literarture in 1982. He received the Public Humanities Award from the D.C. Humanities Council in 1988. In 1993 the literary community of Washington awarded him the Columbia Merit Award. On July 17, 1994, the Mayor of Baltimore made him an honorary citizen of the city of Baltimore.

In Search of Color Everywhere was awarded the 1994 PEN Oakland Josephine Miles Award and was a Book of the Month Club selection. Mr. Miller received the 1995 O.B. Hardison Jr. Poetry Prize. He was awarded an honorary doctorate of literature from Emory & Henry College on May 18, 1996. In 1997 he was presented with the Stephen Henderson Poetry Award by the African American Literature and Culture Society. In 2001 the Mayor of Jackson, Tennessee proclaimed May 21, 2001 as “E. Ethelbert Miller Day.” Fathering Words was selected by  DC WE READ in 2003 for the one book, one city program sponsored by the D.C. Public Libraries. In 2004, Mr. Miller was awarded a Fulbright to visit Israel.

                                                     Current Positions Held:   

Provisions Learning Library (Board Chair):

Capitol Letters Writing Center (Board member):

The Writer's Center (Board member):

Split This Rock (Board member):

African American Review (Advisory Editor):


                                                          Former Positions Held:

Mr. Miller served on the following boards:

PEN American Center

PEN/Faulkner Foundation

Associated Writing Programs (AWP)

Washington Area Lawyer for the Arts (WALA)

Edmund Burke School 

Mr. Miller has served as a visiting professor as the University of Nevada, Las Vegas and adjunct professor at American University. In 1996 he was the Jessie Ball DuPont Scholar at Emory & Henry College. He was scholar-in-residence at George Mason University, and Carell Writer-in-Residence at Harpeth Hall School in Nashville, Tennessee. 

For several years he hosted the popular weekly radio program Maiden Voyage on WDCU-FM, as well as Vertigo On The Air on WPFW

                                        Poems are included in the following books: 

The Oxford Anthology of African-American Poetry edited by Arnold

Dance the Guns to Silence edited by Nii Ayikwei Parkes and Kadija Sesay.

New Bones: Contemporary Black Writers In America edited by Kevin E.
Quashie, Joyce Lausch and Keith Miller.

Spirit & Flame edited by Keith Gilyard

Trouble the Water, 250 Years of African American Poetry edited by Jerry  Ward.

The Garden Thrives edited by Clarence Major.

The New Cavalcade edited by Arthur P. Davis, Saunders Redding and Joyce Joyce.

I Am The Darker Brother edited by Arnold Adoff.

Erotique Noire/Black Erotica edited by Miriam DeCosta Willis, Reginald 
Martin and Roseann Bell.

I Feel A Little Jumpy Around You edited by Naomi S. Nye and Paul 

360 A Revolution of Blakc Poets edited by Kalamu ya Salaam and
Kwame Alexander.

Catch the Fire edited by Derrick I.M. Gilbert (aka D. Knowledge).

Beyond Lament, Poets of the World Bearing Witness to the Holocaust
edited by Marguerite M. Striar.

Identity Lessons: Contemporary Writing About Learning to Be American
edited by Maria Gillan and Jennifer Gillan.

Literature, The Evolving Canon edited by Sven P. Birkerts .

Weavings 2000: The Maryland Millennial Anthology edited by Michael

Unsettling America: An Anthology of Contemporary Multicultural Poetry
Edited by Maria Mazziotti Gillan and Jennifer Gillan.

Light, Among Shadow: A Celebration of Orlando Letelier, Ronni Karpen
Moffitt, and Heroes of The Human Rights Movement edited by Scott

The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Writing Poetry by Nikki Moustaki
Cabin Fever: Poets At Joaquin Miller’s Cabin 1984-2001 edited by 
Jacklyn W. Potter, Dwaine Rieves and Gary Stein.

Furious Flower: African American Poetry from the Black Arts Movement
to the Present edited by Joanne V. Gabbin.

Perfect In Their Art: Poems On Boxing From Homer To Ali edited by
  Robert Hedin and Michael Waters.

The Ringing Ear: Black Poets Lean South edited by Nikky Finney 

   We Begin Here - Poems For Palestine and Lebanon edited by Kamal  
and Kathy Engel


                                    Essays are included in the following books:
Writing Creative Nonfiction edited by Carolyn Forche and Philip Gerard.

Tales from the Couch, Writers on Therapy edited by Jason Shinder.

Picturing Us, African American Identity in Photography edited by
Deborah Willis.

The Beacon Best of 2000: Great Writing by Women and Men edited by
Edwidge Danticat.

3 Minutes or less, Life Lessons from America’s Greatest Writers
edited by the PEN/Faulkner Foundation.

The Games We Played by Steven A. Cohen.

First Loves edited by Carmela Ciuraru.

From Daughters & Sons To Fathers: What I’ve Never Said edited by
Constance Warloe.

                             Fiction can be found in the following books:
Micro Fiction edited by Jerome Stern.

Brown Sugar 3: When Opposites Attract edited by Carol Taylor.

Intimacy: Erotic Stories of Love, Lust and Marriage by Black Men

Edited by Robert Fleming.
                          Poems included in the following children's books:
In Daddy’s Arms I Am Tall by Javaka Steptoe.

Words with Wings by Belinda Rochelle.
                                               The Anacostia Museum & Center 
                                         for African American History and Culture

On-Line Exhibit at the Anacostia Museum (Smithsonian) 
curated by E. Ethelbert Miller

June 7, 2004 to December 31, 2004

Guest curator E. Ethelbert Miller explores the relationship between inspiration and personal place in the work of nine celebrated authors. The exhibit features artwork, personal objects, and taped interviews and readings from Valerie Boyd, Dolores Kendrick, Kenneth Carroll, Ocatvia E. Butler, Samuel R. Delany, Walter Dean Myers, Eloise Greenfield, Edwidge Danticat, and Charles Johnson. Also featured are the inspirational works of noted artist and illustrator of children's literature, Kadir Nelson.

See Washington Post Review


                                  OPERATION HOMECOMING 

Operation Homecoming is a new project created by the National Endowment
for the Arts.

The purpose is to preserve the stories and reflections of American
troops who have been serving in Afghanistan and Iraq. Writing workshops are held for soldiers and their families. 

I was recently invited to conduct a workshop at Camp Ederle located in 
Vicenza, Italy. For additional information on Operation Homecoming visit:


                        E Ethelbert Miller meeting with a member of the SETAF Military
                                         Community in Italy. September 2004
                                  Poems are included in the following recordings:
The BlackWords Compilation. Volume 1.
Our Souls Have Grown Deep Like the Rivers
                                              CONTACT  INFORMATION
Mailing Address:
MSC 590 514
Howard University
Washington, DC 20059

202 806-7242 (Work)
202 291-1560 (Home)

FAX: 202 291-1566 or 202 986-0538
Email:  (Home)
Blog: (Click on E-Notes)
                                                          The Writer's Center


See Video of E.Ethelbert Miller Reading Excerpts from Fathering Words

Video Link