In November 2011, Nikky Finney won the National Book Award for Poetry as a result of her fourth book of poetry Head Off & Split (Northwestern University Press, 2011). In her moving acceptance speech, Finney started with a history lesson in the form of a 1739 South Carolina Slave Code. This slave code forbade teaching slaves how to read and write, and threatened a fine, jail time, and even death “for circulating any incendiary literature.” Finney not only spoke with poise and determination regarding history, but also of her-story: her parents, her beloved press, her fellow finalists, and a pair of her teachers. The speech, like her book, quite rightly, garnered her widespread acclaim and I think of both regularly. These thoughts were especially illumed when I reached out to Northwestern University Press this past year to inquire about Marcus Jackson’s second full-length collection Pardon My Heart.