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My House

4.31  ·  Rating Details ·  301 Ratings  ·  27 Reviews
Enter the world of Nikki Giovanni. Writing of mothers and their children, of childhood memories, of black leaders and black Africa, the poems in My House marked a new dimension in tone and philosophy for Nikki Giovanni when they first appeared at the beginning of her extraordinary career. Emotional and autobiographical, Nikki Giovanni personalizes the political--like no on ...more
Paperback, 96 pages
Published March 1st 1974 by Harper Perennial (first published 1972)
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Mar 11, 2012 Melki rated it really liked it
Nikki Giovanni's work proves that poetry can be more than just pretty words. Quite a few of the poems in this book offer fiery and tart social and political commentary.

From Atrocities:
at a moment when agnew could define hard and soft
drugs on the basis of his daughter's involvement
with them

I can't think of many other poets who write about receiving visits from the F.B.I.

Some of these poems, I loved. Some of them left me scratching my head.
Some of them, I loved only parts.

From When I Die:
but i do
Oct 04, 2011 Bonnie rated it it was ok
Shelves: poetry-verse, z-2011
Interested in more of my reviews? Visit my blog!

I blame my two-star review on the fact that I’m not nearly sophisticated enough to fully understand and appreciate poetry. I don’t get it half the time; although, I have read some poetry books and adored them so who knows what my problem was with this one.

I picked this up from my library after seeing it on the banned/challenged book list so of course I had to see what it was all about. There were some sections that I liked, but then there were some
Jan 19, 2010 Phoebe rated it liked it
Shelves: poetry
Nikki Giovanni's poetry always delights me. It's fun, dangerous, smart, quick, and speaks to black experience as well as to the human experience. If you're not a black woman of American birth, you can get a taste of what's it like through Nikki's Giovanni's eyes. You might like it. You might want to stay a while.
Nov 07, 2011 Cyndi rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Superb and profound. Soulful and longing. Beautiful and rich. Ms Giovanni is a poet for the ages whose voice is informed by race, gender, culture, education and love. Her words stir my soul and never fail to move me.
Jan 29, 2008 Tarosa rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Everyone!
Nikki Giovanni is my first favorite poet. She gets it and she's not pretentious about it. She is 100% badass and I love her forever.
Robert T.
Jul 23, 2008 Robert T. rated it it was amazing
I read these poems every few months. They make me feel human, safe, loved, real.
Jul 27, 2016 Brendan rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: lady-poets
Rating: Soft 4.

Foreword by Ida Lewis, friend and sometimes editor. Themes include being black in America, individualism, family, and celebrity. The poems are divided into two sections: The Rooms Inside and The Rooms Outside. Most of (if not all) the pieces were written between 1970 and 1972. She went a bit off the deep end in "Atrocities", but on the whole I found this collection to be more inclusive than The Women and the Men.

"Mixed Media" - art on her wall
"[Untitled]" - after the lo
Lexi Morasquezo
Jun 05, 2013 Lexi Morasquezo rated it it was amazing
I found that My House, by Nikki Giovanni, was a very insightful book. Her words cut deep, with every stanza, and her tones were humorous and serious at the same time. Nikki's experiences, and stories hold so much emotion, I was almost overwhelmed, almost. The emotion and confliction of her words were inspiring, and saddening, full of happiness all at the same time. I enjoyed this book very much because it gave me a full on look at someone else's experiences and memories. Every description she gi ...more
Cara Byrne
Jul 06, 2013 Cara Byrne rated it liked it
Giovanni's work has always intrigued me - and this collection is no exception. It's skillfully written and full of passionate, funny, dark, biting poems that linger. She does a nice job navigating between the interiors and exteriors of her "house." The first section, titled "The Rooms Inside" are filled with poems about memory, family, vulnerability and love, while "The Poems Outside" engage in thematic readings of political movements, celebrity, government, and internationalism. My favorites le ...more
Apr 25, 2015 Monica rated it really liked it
Nikki Giovanni's "My House" is a delectable collection of
poems. In "My House" Giovanni breaks from her earlier more political verse and moves toward a confessional
poem form that sees the universality in the personal. Her voice is vibrant - especially in 'Conversation' and my favorite 'Just a New York Poem.' The reader feels Giovanni gaining conviction in her own work as the authority of knowing through experiencing resonates on each page. Her poems, short and relatable, conjur up specific image
Bryana Grimsley
Jun 05, 2013 Bryana Grimsley rated it liked it
My House is a cute little poem. It was beautiful. She captures your attention like unlike some poetry. Her words spread across the page like heaven. The simplicity of the poem is what allowed for you to expand your imagination and view the true complexity of the dicition.

There isn't much I can say about this poem other then the fact that it is a must read. It takes you into another world and allows to see into a form of writing and a different voice than most poets. Nikki has such a great way o
Sep 28, 2013 Abby added it
Got to see Nikki Giovanni speak (star power!!) at my school in 2010. In case you can't tell from her poetry, she's a strong personality. Three years later, this book happened along at the right time for me to love it: the minuscule detail of the inside rooms, and the tendency to laugh at things that aren't funny, which I appreciate. Although maybe, looking at the 60s from a distance, I feel just a little too safe.
Jul 06, 2012 Eunice rated it it was amazing
I LOVE Nikki Gionavanni. She says it like it is. My creative writing teacher in high school suggested I read this book because it reminded her of my writing. I could not put this book down. Giovanni has a way of being frank and open in what she writes, yet there is a great art and keen style to her poetry. Giovanni is still my favorite poet of all time!! Hope she sees this comment! :)
May 23, 2011 Dorre rated it it was amazing
I loved everything in this collection! My favorite stanza:

When I die I hope no one who ever hurt me cries
And if they cry I hope their eyes fall out
And a million maggots that had made up their brains
Crawl from the empty holes and devour the flesh
That covered the evil that passed itself off as a person
That I probably tried
To love
Sep 14, 2010 Poupina rated it really liked it
"I run the kitchen/and I can stand in the heat."
A more mature, conscious blend of seemingly incongruent parts, akin to the quilting motif used in the poem, to a bold statement of independence. Individual worth and self-expression characterize the poems in My House.
May 08, 2015 Helen rated it it was amazing
Sharp and soft at the same time, Nikki Giovanni's poetry is a joy to read, even when the poems are about Spiro Agnew, the core issues addressed, feminism, civil rights, motherhood, are still with us, and these poems still strike a chord.
Aug 02, 2016 Nicole rated it liked it
3.5 stars
Dec 02, 2012 Angélique rated it really liked it
Shelves: poetry, black-lit
Mmmm. These poems--they sneak up on you. Pretending to be only entertaining and safe then suddenly unveiling themselves as real, raw, deeper than the surface entities that flood your entire soul.
Elizabeth-anne Kim
Jan 31, 2013 Elizabeth-anne Kim rated it it was amazing
I love this collection, especially "Conversation." I never fail to see something new with each rereading.
Feb 01, 2017 Jen rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: poetry
Favorite poems:

Straight Talk
My House
Nicole White
Nov 06, 2014 Nicole White rated it it was amazing
One of my favorite books of poetry
Aby Pacheco
Aug 28, 2012 Aby Pacheco rated it it was amazing
Giovanni is always gold. 'My House'is just further evidence of that.
Jan 11, 2016 Anne rated it liked it
The tone and the flow of Nikki Giovanni's poems are beautiful, and profound. I especially loved the poem, A Certain Peace. I will definitely read more of her work!
Oct 05, 2007 E rated it really liked it
Shelves: poetry
Nikki is too cool for yellow, for black and white, or for railroad tracks.
Greg Bem
Dec 22, 2015 Greg Bem rated it it was amazing
I felt my insides as the insides of another culture and though I appropriated I sobbed and cheered too.
Sep 15, 2014 alix rated it really liked it
breezed through, will probably reread. especially loved the poem about fed surveillance. funny, bright, honest poems.
Yogesh rated it it was amazing
May 18, 2016
Malia rated it it was amazing
Jan 08, 2015
Caribbeanchyck rated it it was amazing
Jun 07, 2014
e rated it it was amazing
Sep 12, 2007
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Yolande Cornelia "Nikki" Giovanni is a Grammy-nominated American poet, activist and author. She has written numerous volumes of poetry and has been honored with loads of awards, including 20 honorary degrees from national colleges and universities. Her poems are undeniably authentic distillations of black life in America. She was editor of Fisk University's literary magazine. She lives in Blacksbu ...more
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