By AFRO Staff
Author and poet, Kai Adia, is honored to have her books in independent bookshops across her city of Los Angeles including the historic, Black-owned bookstore, Eso Won Books. As a fixture in the community, nestled in Leimert Park, Eso Won Books has a long history of hosting author events from President Barack Obama to literary icon, Toni Morrison. In time for National Poetry Month, readers can go in-store and find Kai Adia’s poetry collection, The Depths of Anima, on the hallowed bookshelves at Eso Won Books, in the chic woman-owned bookstore Reparations Club, as well as online at many more local bookstores.
Inspired by poets like Nikki Giovanni, Tracy K. Smith, and Elizabeth Acevedo, Kai Adia writes prose poetry that takes you into the deep world of Black women introverts. The Depths of Anima is an introspective look at Black girlhood and the transition into womanhood. It challenges Carl Jung’s concept of “Anima” being the feminine aspect of the male psyche by introducing an interpretation of the feminine-spirit living in all of us. You’ll find the author’s illustrations of Anima throughout the collection as the poems take a look at our inner worlds, reminding readers that your inner sanctum is worthy of protection and your place in the world is no accident.
Kai Adia is an alum of WriteGirl, the Los Angeles-based writing mentorship program that has helped develop voices like fellow alumna and inaugural poet, Amanda Gorman. She has recently shared her poetry through author discussions at Antioch University Los Angeles. Her book has also made it to the library shelves of notable local schools like the Crossroads School for Arts & Sciences in Santa Monica. Recently, she has spoken about her work and influences on The Chills At Will podcast and in Voyage LA Magazine. Additionally, Kai created a poem in honor of International Women’s Day for human rights organization, Breakthrough.
Readers of The Depths of Anima have shared their praise for the collection, saying:
“Rooted in nature, heritage, and spirituality, Kai Adia’s writing is a dynamic journey through time and space. This collection breathes life into memory, reflecting upon the deepest elements of our mind and imagination. This poet is summoning the literary ancestors with her words and we all are called to listen.” – Nia McAllister, Poet & Founder of the MoAD Open Mic Night.
“The Depths of Anima invites you to take a closer look at the often unexamined, walking you through the interior life of a young Black woman navigating a world not intended for her joy, but committed to the journey of claiming it. There is doubt, there is fear – there are warnings and reflections on what the two can birth. Many poems double as mirrors. Kai’s meditative prose strings together much of what goes unsaid, reminding readers of the power of speaking deep truths to yourself and others.” – Asha Grant, Founder of The Salt Eaters Bookshop.
The Depths of Anima is published by Los Angeles-based, Black-women-owned publisher, Bee Infinite Publishing. Bee Infinite is co-founded by mother-daughter duo Kai Adia, and educational consultant and publisher, Angela Benson.
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Author Kai Adia, says, “Being an indie author and publisher takes a lot of hustle and relationship building to get people interested in reading and supporting your projects. As a young entrepreneur, I love the freedom and empowerment of this challenge, it has pushed me to write poetry, illustrate the art within my poetry collection, and, ultimately, start a business. I’m grateful to lean on the community of independent bookstores who want to create spaces for new, inclusive, and independent voices.”
Everyday, people invest with their dollars. A recent study by the American Independent Business Alliance concluded that choosing [to purchase at] a locally owned business generates almost three times as much economic benefit for the local region as shopping at a chain. Shopping local directly impacts and supports entrepreneurs like independent authors, independent publishing houses, bookstore owners as well as the local community.
April is a powerful month to support independent bookstores and poetry as it’s National Poetry Month and Independent Bookstore Day is Saturday, April 24th. For more information, visit www.beeinfinite.org.