Unapologetic, opinionated, outspoken, sometimes shy, black, gay and at times crazy, Uriah Bell has accepted the sum of his whole to embrace and develop the writer within. Born and raised in the inner city of Detroit to a bi-racial substance abusive mother that struggled with understanding and accepting her Caucasian side, Uriah witnessed racism and self-conflicting identity throughout his childhood. An only child until age twelve, Uriah reached out to the power of prose to express himself when words fell on deaf ears. Considered more of an outlet than an art, Uriah used the power of his words to express himself to family in times of conflict and dispute. Adding insult to injury of an already broken family, Uriah came out to his family at age 18 not fully knowing the risk he was taking, but determined that whatever the outcome, he would have a voice, and that voice would be heard.
Although Uriah has been writing most of his life, it wasn’t until 2008 that he decided to expose his personal self with his first collection of poetry entitled Mood Swings. Mood Swings was Uriah’s invitation to join him on a personal journey of sex, love, and life. Mood Swings and Uriah received reviews from a number of publications including Instinct Magazine and Boston Spirit Magazine. Uriah has been invited to speak at numerous events celebrating the positive achievements of the LGBT community.
“I’ve always had a passion for the arts, be it dance, design, singing or instrumentation; however, my first love is written expression, especially poetry. It bothers me that poets have a bad rap, and that people have this notion that poetry will automatically fly over their heads. My goal is to make poetry tangible. I write for the people, if they can’t understand me, I’m not doing my job. I want to be the people’s poet.”
Uriah donates his time and talents to organizations feverishly working to spread awareness and put an end to the AIDS epidemic, solve gay men’s health issues, domestic violence, and promote human rights. Uriah has worked with the Black church to help strengthen their presence in the fight against AIDS, as well as increase compassion and understanding between the Church and the GLBT community. In light of his many achievements, his proudest moment as a writer was when he received a hand written letter of congratulations from esteemed poet / writer and long time mentor, Nikki Giovanni.
Determined to have sole creative control over his work, in 2009 Uriah founded his own publishing company Rising Voices Press. Rising Voices Press published Uriah’s newest collection of poetry entitled, ‘epiphany: poems in the key of love’ which was released March 22, 2010. Rising Voices will help to publish new and upcoming minority LGBT writers, and continue the fight of literacy in the black community.
Uriah currently resides in Boston, MA.
Bringing words to life.
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