What We Are About

This site is dedicated to Nathaniel Turner  (1800-1831), Prophet of Southampton, and Marcus Bruce Christian (1900-1976), Poet of New Orleans. Both had a sense of mission and community greater than his individual interests and desires. Their work and writings on their work are the core content of this site. Thus, ChickenBones: A Journal  is their home and a means of extending their influence and consideration.

Like many African-American writers and artists, Turner and Christian are individuals who have been rendered faceless and voiceless by American and African-American anthologists and other creators of the canons of American literature and art.  In this discriminating context, Turner and Christian are worthy icons for a portion of the community we seek to serve. We thus invite essays, poems, stories, or other materials from those who find themselves in a similar situation, especially works that focus on African-American literary and artistic themes. The regular media and power brokers care little of our interests.

ChickenBones: A Journal, however, is not just interested in the cultural and artistic productions of African America. Our interests are not provincial. We are interested in posting the works of all writers and artists, regardless of race, ethnic, or national background. We invite topics economic, political, and religious as well. Yet we are especially interested in the writings of African, Asian, Latin, and Hispanic writers. Our only limitation is that the writings represent honesty and beauty. Thus this site is open to all who speak to the human heart, to those who do not have the means or contacts to get a fair hearing. True art belongs to the world.

So send in your work! Come see us often. Tell your friends and students. We are here to serve. Your contribution can be sent to rudolphlewis@hotmail.com.

Support our work with a subscription of $50 a year, which can be sent to

ChickenBones: A Journal / 2005 Arabian Drive / Finksburg, MD 21048

Disclaimer: We may or may not ascribe to the ideas or information contained in contributors’ writings and images.

Send contributions to: ChickenBones: A Journal /  2005 Arabian Drive / Finksburg, MD 21048  — I became aware of Rudy Lewis’ labor of love a few short months ago during a visit to Kalamu ya Salaam’s e-drum listserv. As soon as I saw the title of the journal I knew it was about Black folks, and the power of the written word.  A quick click took me into a journal that’s long on creativity, highlighting well-known, little known, and a little known writers, and commitment to the empowerment of Black folks. I contacted Rudy to ask if he’d consider publishing some of my work. His response was immediate, and a couple of days after I’d forwarded some poems to him—they were part of ChickenBones. What I didn’t know was that this journal has been surviving for the last five years with very little outside financial support. . .  If we want journals like this to “thrive” we need to support them with more than our website hits, praise, and submissions for publication consideration.

—Peace, Mary E. Weems (January 2007)

Help Save ChickenBones—Our Literary Journal /Make check or money orders out to ChickenBones: A Journal

Send contributions to: ChickenBones: A Journal / 13219 Kientz Road / Jarratt, VA 23867

This Year’s Review (2002)

and the Future of ChickenBones: a Journal

In the last year, ChickenBones: A Journal has amassed and published over 100 megs of information–data, literary and artistic work. Much of the information that provided the base for the website was not readily accessible. Some of it were documents, manuscripts, articles published in small journals or  essays presented at conferences or materials related to Marcus Bruce Christian, Nathaniel Turner of Southampton, black labor, and the racial repression of the Southern states. More

We served a great audience in 2006: nearly 2 million sessions; over 3.3 million pageviews. In 2007, we still need your active financial support. ChickenBones is adding and supporting daily new and established writers, scholars and publishers. We are a unique and fresh experience in Internet publishing.  Our Black Arts  files are growing and including table of contents of anthologies of the 60s, 70s, 80s, and 90s out of publication and not on the Internet.  We have archival material that is difficult to access. We have current African writers and a Nigerian audience. We have religionists of every stripe, including Turks and atheists, too. We have articles and materials still on the site published 5 years ago. We have free access. Artists, writers, publishers want to be on ChickenBones because google and other search engines put their work in the top ten hits. But they are lax in their financial support. I cannot accomplish what we do alone: we need your continuing support. Please send in your donations, today, encourage your friends, also.  Help Save ChickenBones