NW Quadrant, East of Rock Creek, African American, LGBTQ

Essex Hemphill
(April 16, 1957 - November 4, 1995)

3351 Mt. Pleasant St. NW, Apt. #9, Columbia Heights neighborhood, DC.

Photo by Mark Thompson/DRKRMHemphill was a gay rights activist and the author of three books of poems: Earth Life (1985), Conditions (1986), and Ceremonies (1992). He edited the landmark anthology Brother to Brother: New Writings by Black Gay Men (1991).

Raised in Southeast DC, Hemphill was the recipient of a Lambda Literary Award, a National Library Award for Gay, Lesbian, and Bisexual Literature, and a visiting scholarship at the Getty Center for the History of Art and the Humanities. He formed a performance art group with Larry Duckett and Wayson Jones in the 1980s. He also appeared in several films, including Tongues Untied, Black Is...Black Ain't, and Looking for Langston.


Beltway Poetry Quarterly, Regie Cabico on Essex Hemphill

Photo of author courtesy of Mark Thompson/DRKRM .