by Khadijah Z. Ali-Coleman

In this captivating poetry collection by Khadijah Z. Ali-Coleman, released during the Juneteenth 2023 weekend, the power of words becomes a force to reckon with. Through poignant verses written both before and during the COVID-19 global health pandemic, Ali-Coleman weaves a tapestry of emotions that delve into the ongoing struggle for the liberation of Black people in America.

With a skillful hand, Ali-Coleman memorializes the triumphs and tribulations of the Black community, their resilience shining through each line. From the haunting accounts of violence inflicted upon individuals like Ralph Yarl to the heart-wrenching proclamation from a protagonist channeling the Sandra Bland story, the poet lays bare the realities faced by Black people, unafraid to confront the depths of their pain.

Throughout the book,  Ali-Coleman utilizes a variety of poetic forms, effortlessly shifting between riveting free verse, evocative haiku, and stirring elegies. Each poem is a testament to the strength and beauty of Black culture, capturing the spirit of a community that has faced adversity with unwavering determination.

As the 2023-2026 Poet Laureate of Prince George's County, Maryland, Ali-Coleman brings her profound understanding of the human experience and her unwavering dedication to social justice to the forefront. This collection speaks directly to the hearts of its readers, inspiring reflection, empathy, and a call to action.

In a world that too often tries to silence voices, Ali-Coleman's poetry resounds with unyielding power, demanding to be heard. This poetry collection is a testament to the endurance of the human spirit and a celebration of the indomitable joy that can rise even in the face of adversity. It is a book that will leave an indelible mark on its readers, reminding us all of the importance of recognizing and amplifying the stories of the Black experience.


Photo by Ben Dawson, Jr.

Khadijah Z. Ali-Coleman, Ed.D. is currently the 2023 Poet Laureate of Prince George's County, MD.  She is a cultural curator with over 20 years of applied experience transforming places into arts and educational spaces. She is award-winning performance artist Khadijah Moon, and a multi-genre writer who is a producing playwright and filmmaker.

Dr. Ali-Coleman is founder of the multidisciplinary arts group Liberated Muse and co-founder of the national education research group Black Family Homeschool Educators and Scholars, LLC (BFHES). She has maintained the youth development blog So Our Youth Aspire since 2006. Dr. Ali-Coleman has been featured in the The Washington Post, USA Today, The Guardian, The Financial Times and more because of her work in arts and education. She has been interviewed by various broadcast media outlets, including NPR, CNN, Slate, and local affiliates of NBC, FOX and CBS.

She is editor of the Liberated Muse anthology book series and has creative work and scholary writings featured in several books.  Her plays have been staged, workshopped and read on dozens of stages.  Dr. Ali-Coleman is author of the book The Summoning of Black Joy (2023), the children's book Mariah's Maracas (2018) and co-editor of the book Homeschooling Black Children in the US: Theory, Practice and Popular Culture (2022). 

​For over 20 years, she has created and led educational programs at numerous institutions, and has taught Communication Studies, Professional Writing and Fine & Performing Arts at different colleges and universities since 2011, including Montgomery College, The University of Maryland, Community College of Baltimore County and Prince George's Community College.

She is a professional member of The Dramatists Guild, The Recording Academy and the Association of African American Museums.  She is a former board member at Montgomery Community Media (MCM) and currently serves as the Executive Director of the Hurston/Wright Foundation, an organization that has supported Black Writers since 1990.

Dr. Ali-Coleman holds a doctorate in education from Morgan State University; a Master of Arts degree in Mass Communication from Towson University; and a Bachelor of Arts degree in Interdisciplinary Studies (African American Studies and Mass Media) with a minor in Writing from the University of Maryland Baltimore, County (UMBC). She earned a Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) in the Workplace Certificate  from the University of South Florida, Muma College of Business in 2021.

2023 Prince George's County, MD Poet Laureate Installation

Upcoming Events

Khadijah Ali-Coleman will be the featured guest poet for the evening that includes an open mic, hosted by acclaimed poet, KaNikki Jakarta

Khadijah Ali-Coleman shares poems from her book, The Summoning of Black Joy and delves into a discussion on Black joy with host Lea Gilmore. This is a virtual event.

Khadijah Ali-Coleman hosts a panel discussion on homeschooling Black children in the United States. This is an in-person event that will also be livestreamed for virtual viewing.

Come celebrate Khadijah's birthday with her as she talks all things creative with her Liberated Muse sisters and shares from her latest book.

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I would love to share an EMPOWERING message with your audience. I talk all things EDUCATION and ARTS and a few things in between.




In 2020,  Dr. Khadijah Ali-Coleman had just finished defending her doctoral dissertation on dual enrolled African American homeschooled students and their perceptions of preparedness for community college. The COVID-19 global pandemic and quarantine had just gone into effect. She was offered an opportunity to publish her dissertation into a book. She opted to edit an anthology of voices on Black homeschooling instead. During her own research study, she had seen the lack of Black voices in the research on Black homeschooling families. As a homeschooling mother and researcher, she wanted to expand the research literature and offer an opportunity for other homeschooling parents and researchers to share their experiences and research. And, that is what this book is. Released January 2022, it is on sale today.
Add it to your library today!


Let's Talk About Homeschooling Black Children


Dr. Jared Ball interviews Dr. Ali-Coleman during this segment on Homeschooling While Black.


This is a podcast interview conducted by Jason Johnson. You can listen to it and read the transcript HERE

WPFW 89.3 FM-Aug 18, 2021

Homeschooling Black Children in America: A Growing Practice: Interview with David Whettstone on WPFW 89.3 FM

The Positive Impact of Homeschooling Black Children

Watch this short film, The Positive Impact of Homeschooling Black Children about Dr. Ali-Coleman's experience homeschooling her daughter. The film also features data pulled from her 2019 study, Dual Enrolled African American Homeschooled Students' Perceptions of Preparedness for Community College.


The Washington Post

Khadijah Z. Ali-Coleman, a scholar who is now working on a book about Black homeschooling, said many Black parents fear that some traditional public schools will exact a mental and psychological toll on their children. 

'When we talk about being in spaces where our histories are continuously distorted or ignored, where a child cannot see themselves or their ancestors in the retellings of stories on how things have been created or develop, that is an assault on your mental state," Ali-Coleman said. 'Home schooling is a safe space'."

-Moriah Balingit and Kate Rabinowitz, The Washington Post-July 27, 2021, Homeschooling exploded among Black, Asian and Latino students. But, it wasn't just the pandemic.

Read the Article Here

WIRED Magazine

Covid-19 was the publicist for homeschooling,” says Khadijah Ali-Coleman, a longtime homeschooling parent and a researcher who studies African American homeschool students. In April 2020, Ali-Coleman and researcher Cheryl Fields-Smith co-founded the Black Family Homeschool Educators and Scholars network to connect researchers and the handful of Black homeschool families they had met through their research. But what began as a small Facebook group climbed to over 1,000 members, including many families new to homeschooling.

-Pia Ceres, Wired Magazine-June 3, 2021, They Rage-Quit the School System—and They're Not Going Back 

Read the Article Here

Associated Press

Even before the pandemic, concerns about racially hostile environments contributed to large numbers of Black parents turning to homeschooling, said Khadijah Ali-Coleman, co-director of Black Family Homeschool Educators and Scholars. There has since been a surge in homeschooling among Black families. 

"'Racism in schools plays a huge, huge role in a family’s choice to do homeschooling,' Ali-Coleman said. 'That racism can manifest in a lot of different ways, from a teacher who criminalizes every behavior to not recognizing how curriculums exclude the experiences of Black people to not presenting Black children with the same opportunities such as accelerated classes as white children.

-Christine Fernando, The Associated Press-May 4, 2021, Some Black Parents Say Homeschooling Gives Racism a Reprieve

Read Article Here

The Final Call

Dr. Khadijah Ali-Coleman, a mother and  multi-disciplinary artist, co-founded Black Family Homeschool Educators and Scholars to share best practices that serve Black homeschooling families. 

-The Final Call - August 25, 2020, Looking beyond politics for Black survival 

Read the article here.
Dr. Khadijah Z. Ali-Coleman, co-founder of Black Family Homeschool Educators and Scholars and co-editor of the book Homeschooling Black Children in the United States, agrees that the choices parents and schools are left with are not ideal but that all parents deserve equal access to be able to make the best choice.

-Kelly Glass, August 7, 2020 Pandemic Schooling options are not created equal for all families
Read the article here
ABC-WJLA Channel 7
Across the country, many parents who thought home schooling wasn't for them, are turning out to be its biggest advocates, leading to unprecedented numbers of at-home students and shattering the homeschooling stereotype.

“It is unique to what your family needs, what your family goals are, and just the natural dynamic of your family,” says Dr Khadijah Ali-Coleman, an educator who studies home schooling.
-Lisa Fletcher, ABC7, May 2022

Read the article here
Black Enterprise

Khadijah Ali-Coleman, co-director of Black Family Homeschool Educators and Scholars, has noted an increase in Black parents choosing to homeschool their children rather than sending them off to school.

“Racism in schools plays a huge, huge role in a family's choice to do homeschooling...that racism can manifest in a lot of different ways-- from the teacher who criminalizes every behavior to not recognizing how curriculum exclude the experiences of Black people."

-Jeroslyn Johnson- May 2021, Black Parents Credit Remote Learning for Easing Issues of Racism

Read the article here


Booking & Media Inquiries

media work as a producer, host and director

Podcasts, Radio & Film Work

The Black Writer's Studio

Dr. Khadijah Ali-Coleman is the host of the Black Writer's Studio podcast. She is the executive director of the Hurston Wright Foundation. The podcast highlights writers of the African diaspora. Each new episode is released on Sundays via YouTube, Anchor.FM and Spotify.

Contemporary Perspectives on Black Homeschooling

The Contemporary Perspectives on Black Homeschooling podcast is hosted by Dr. Khadijah Z. Ali-Coleman. This podcast can be listened to on Spotify, Apple, Google Play and other podcast spaces. Learn more about BFHES at

Who Is Liberated Muse?

A short film about the arts collective Liberated Muse Arts Group. Khadijah Ali-Coleman founded Liberated Muse in 2008.


Be Who You Are (Official Video) by Khadijah Moon

Using the stage name, Khadijah Moon, Khadijah Ali-Coleman has appeared on numerous stages showcasing her talents as a versatile singer with incredible depth and musical instinct. She has appeared on renowned stages such as the Apollo Theater in New York and The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts with her arts collective, Liberated Muse and as a solo artist.  As a spoken word artist, she was featured for two years as a poetry host at Busboys & Poets in Washington, DC and has edited three volumes of the Liberated Muse anthology series featuring writers and visual artists from around the world. As a poet, singer and playwright, she has served as the Creative Director of the arts collective Liberated Muse Arts Group which she founded in 2008.

In 2016, Khadijah compiled her music into a one-woman show called Song of a Space Cadet, presented by Artscape, the nation's second largest arts festival. The production featured music, poetry and monologues to share her memoir of how she rebounded from personal and national tragedy to create powerful art.
Soon after, she released a CD of the music from the show titled Song of a Space Cadet



Theatre Reviews

A playwright, Khadijah Z. Ali-Coleman has had more than a dozen of her plays presented publicly in venues throughout the country, including the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, Theater Alliance, and Baltimore Theater Project. She was selected as a Theater Alliance Quadrant Playwright in 2019, working on a commissioned play that was presented as a film by Theater Alliance in 2021.

"The songs [in Running:AMOK] are slow-burning little gems: some smoky, some bluesy, some sparkly."- DC Theatre Scene


Original music from the stage musical WHEN WE WERE GODDESSES, book written by Khadijah Z. Ali-Coleman and song lyrics by Khadijah Z. Ali-Coleman & Angela Ballard with music composed and performed by Ben Dawson, Jr. Vocal performances by Lyn Halstead, Khadijah Ali-Coleman, Colie Aziza and Anonamas

Original music from the stage musical RUNNING: AMOK written by Khadijah Ali-Coleman. Book/lyrics by Khadijah Ali-Coleman, Music composed (and performed) by Gary Young. See playlist for vocalist names.
Running: AMOK debuted in the 2010 Capital Fringe Fest and was featured in a successful five-day run in 2011, presented by the DC Black Theater Festival (DCBTF) in May preceding the DCBTF summer festival.

Executive Produced by Khadijah Z. Ali-Coleman
All music composed, produced and engineered by Ben Dawson, Jr.
Co-produced by Colette Williams, Angela Ballard, and Lyn Artope
All song and spoken word lyrics written by Khadijah Z. Ali-Coleman EXCEPT the following:

"The Awakening" written by Lyn Artope, music composed by Ben Dawson, Jr.

"Us" written by Angela Ballard, music composed by Ben Dawson, Jr.
"Baltimore" written by Randy Newman, used with permission. New music composition by Ben Dawson, Jr.

"Mardi Gras" written by Colette Williams, music composed by Ben Dawson, Jr.

"In My Song" is written by Khadijah Z. Ali-Coleman with an excerpt of Maya Angelou's "Phenomenal Woman" included.

Vocal performances by Lyn Halstead, Khadijah Ali-Coleman, Colie Aziza and Anonamas