NYU Black Renaissance Noire Fall 2015 Volume 15.2 - Page 142

140 Eric John Priestley was one of the most erudite dudes to come through the workshop; he was really intense and wrote long pithy poems. When Eric read his poetry, his learned personality shined through the metaphors and similes like sunlight breaking through dark clouds. Eric did many poetry readings with the workshop. He never formally joined the workshop, but was perpetually hanging out with the young poets residing at the Beach Street house. Once, when a rain storm came pouring through the ceiling of the house on Beach Street, Eric was in the library room, squatting between puddles of water and inspecting a well used copy of Dostoevsky’s Crime and Punishment. Eric was one of the few cats who read Tolstoy’s War and Peace from cover to cover in a state of sheer contentment for the entire length of that monumental novel. The house on Beach Street was like a second home for Eric; he was a regular and frequently interacted with his literate partners. Eric read his poetry in an electrifying way. During a crowded poetry reading at Cal State North Ridge, a perceptive artist dre