Captivating, touching, and sincere, “Pansy Boy” tells the story of a thoughtful young boy who is tormented by his classmates because they perceive him as being different. With whimsical, thoughtful rhymes and a mixture of colorful imagery painted against a grayscale canvas, author and illustrator Paul Harfleet shows us how a seed planted by hate can bloom into a garden filled with love. the main characters optimism and hope in the face of ignorance shows the incredible strength of compassion, and after reading, will surely inspire others to go out into the world and cultivate their own spaces of love.

I was struck by the juxtaposition of Harfleet’s art style—the pops of bright colors in a sea of varying shades of gray; the unflattering expressions of the homophobic classmates versus the soft features of the main character. It adds to the depth and thoughtfulness that went into his words, weaving a beautiful narrative within the images themselves. “Pansy Boy” is not simply a story. It is a call for action, a kindling of fires, an offering of hope for those who need a reminder that there is always a way to rise above the hate.

This review was written by Takoma Bookstore Supervisor Melanie Kates

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For Langston Hughes on His 123 Birthday

Speech given on February 1, 2024 in Havana, Cuba In 1927 Langston Hughes walked into a Cuba amid an emerging community of artists, intellectuals, and radicals.  He saw a “sunrise in a new land [– a day – in his words]sic – full of brownskin surprises, and hitherto unknown contacts in a world of color.”  … Continued

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Palestine Week 2024

January 18, 2024 – January 25, 2024 In keeping with our ongoing mission of uplifting racial and cultural connections, Busboys and Poets is hosting Palestine Week (January 18 through January 25, 2024). This week-long series of events will offer a diverse range of programming featuring Palestinian food, music, dance, poetry, discussions, and other enriching events. … Continued

Website WCGA 2.0 Accessible Verified by Columbia Lighthouse for the Blind

Website WCGA 2.0 Accessible Verified by Columbia Lighthouse for the Blind

Proud to announce that after working with the Accessibility Assurance Department at Columbia Lighthouse for the Blind, the Busboys and Poets website scored a 92% accessibility compliance against WCAG 2.0 level AA. This means that individuals who require alternative access to printed digital content will have comparable access and use of the website as do … Continued

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By: Trivia Lord, the Minutia Master, the Human Wikipedia, Busboys Trivia Host, Max Johansen The First Takoma Trivia of 2019 kicked off with a full house and an epic three way tie! In honor of the (now record-breaking) government shutdown, the theme of our first trivia event of the year was: SHUT IT DOWN! Ten … Continued

Accessibility For All

Accessibility For All

Busboys is a community space that strives to be welcoming, uplifting and accessible to all, regardless of physical ability.