Anthony Toomer, the author of the inspirational poetry collection A Poetic Spanking (Archway Publishing; 2021), was featured on the most recent episode of America Tonight’s “Author’s Corner,” where Kate Delaney interviewed him.
The interview begins with the author’s journey of how he came to write his book and how he came up with a uniquely-matched book title out of three books: Say His Name, Loving You, and Can You Feel Me Now compressed into one that serves up a literary tongue lashing masterpiece. The book is divided into three parts: Toomer’s personal experiences, current events, and introspective observations that lead others on a journey through his life as an African American man.
There, he shared and expressed them through poetry of what it was like to be an African American man in America. While America is widely known as the “land of the free,” Toomer expresses it differently. During the interview, Kate asked Toomer to read one of his poems entitled “America,” from the book “Can You Feel Me Now,” which talks about how America used to be this shining beacon of hope.
He reads, “America, America, land of the free. The greatest lie ever sold to you, sold to me, why couldn’t you just let us be. We had our own culture. We had our own country….” Toomer explains how America brought them to live in their country, but now that “we were there, they want to kick us out,” he added.
And in another, he talked about how God has been with him through all of his trials. Toomer reads, “I rewrite the Lord’s words which I’ve already written. I release them to you. From their biblical prison, now it’s your job to fully understand the message to open your mind and soul to receive all his blessings, now I’m just scratching the surface…”
These are just a few of the poems he wrote that inspired people and helped them find their own truth they would not have found otherwise.
Getting to know Anthony Toomer
Anthony Toomer was born and raised in Brooklyn, New York. He graduated from LaGuardia Community College in Long Island City, Queens, after attending Bushwick High School in Ridgewood, Queens. He formerly lived in the Cooper Park Houses in Greenpoint, Brooklyn. He honorably served in the US Army Reserves, based at Fort Hamilton in Bay Ridge, Brooklyn. Now retired from the New York City Transit Authority as a motorman, he indulged in his lifelong aspiration to write a poetry book.
“What inspired you to write this book?” Kate asked.
A Poetic Spanking was inspired by biblical wisdom and Toomer’s Christian faith that explored the power of prayer, the never-ending battle between good and evil, and God’s ability to pull us out of the darkness and into the light. He reflects on love, the sanctity of marriage, and the need for justice in the African American community as ignorance continues to plague humanity, even in today’s modern world.
And there are three parts to writing A Poetic Spanking.
First, part is “Say His Name,” which tells the story about God and what he expects from his children. “It tells you about what you have to do in life to be rewarded with everlasting life because basically, that’s why Jesus came to forgive our sins,” Toomer said.
He explained how back in Jesus’ day, you had to do offerings to honor God, but because Jesus came, you no longer have to do that. “All we have to do is pray, praise God and honor him and of course live a righteous life, and care about your fellow men. You know they have a saying that was in the movie that everybody wants to go to heaven, but nobody wants to die, but we all gonna die and people have to think about the afterlife,” he added.
“So you’re hoping that through your words, through your verses that people will have their eyes opened,” Kate said.
“Yes, they will to come an understanding to what we are really here for. Because this is not our expected life, our expectations are actually when we leave here,” Toomer told Kate.
Second is “Loving You,” which discusses the ups and downs of love, including love-lost, love-found, and love-rescued. “Because you know love goes both ways,” Toomer exclaimed. “It’s a beautiful thing, in the beginning, it can go that way, or it could go another way, and sometimes love hurts, and people have to be prepared for that and be aware of that,” he said.
“From everything you’ve written, do you have a favorite poem or saying or verse?” Kate asked.
“Yes, for each book, I’ve picked it out. But let me tell you, I love all of them because they all have a story of their own.” Toomer said.
Lastly, “Can You Feel Me Now” addresses social injustices in one’s own country, and Toomer intends to address this growing issue that plagues the country by giving America the wake-up call that they need.
What do people think of the author’s new release?
This has astonished readers of Anthony Toomer’s natural skill at converting current events and personal experiences into poetry. “There is no fake news here. Time and time again, his writing is thought-provoking, and many will identify with its points of contention.”
Therefore, if you don’t want to miss out on a well-versed poetry account of an African American man’s journey in America, A Poetic Spanking should be on your next-to-read list. Interested? Grab your copy today at Amazon.