Kamau Ware


Buffalo Sonnet is a groundbreaking digital comic book written and illustrated by Kamau Ware, commissioned by the Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts. This comic is steeped in history and prayer in the form of a 14-line sonnet for children of the African Diaspora displaced by violence.

Kamau Ware’s black and white approach to the visuals lends the story a documentary-style feel that makes the comic come off as a work of preservation. And yet, it’s whimsical enough, magical even, to capture a sense of wonder that highlights the things that were born, nurtured, and exalted in San Juan Hill. 

Comics Beat (Ricardo Serrano Denis) 

Buffalo Sonnet takes the formless structure of a poem. Characters ebb from an African medicine woman named Sage who offers a prayer in the form of a sonnet for generational healing to children of the African Diaspora. The protagonist Paint brushes against hard and soft lines on an errand through San Juan Hill to pick up beets in an effort to finance his dream of becoming a pianist such as the famed Eubie Blake and the venerable James Reese Europe. In essence, San Juan Hill is a real place that has inspired the poem received by Sage for children of the African Diaspora who find themselves displaced or facing the machine of displacement. The Buffalo Sonnet is an invitation to consider healing for a people migrating by force.

There are select artworks available from this project.


sonnet prayer

11″x17″ print on matte photopaper

$150 | shipping included 

place order 



Sawdayah Brownlee as Sage 

Monifa Coffee as Louise Bryant 

Chase Manning as Paint 

Runako Guistone as Mr.Coco

Francis Marley as Buffalo Soldier 

Leilani Minnis as Black Girl #1

Legacy Period as Black Girl #2 

Ezra Sandoz as San Juan Hill Resident 

Clifford Smith as Shuffle Along Actor 

OG as San Juan Hill Resident 

Nia Calloway as Flapper Girl #1 

Raia Garvin as Flapper Girl  #2

Kanene Holder as San Juan Hill Resident 

Terrell Brown as Shuffle Along Actor 

Asmaa Amadou as Shuffle Along Actress

Orion Mickens as Copper

Dream Period as Marion Monk

Shanna Sabio as Barbara Monk 

Garvey Crown Franks as Thelonius Monk 

Wahkeem Kelly as San Juan Hill Resident 

Uchenna Obiora as San Juan Hill Resident 

Sean Mayers as Adam

Creative Team: 

Kamau Ware: Writer, Illustrator, and Creative Director 

Isa Reyes: Art Direction and Graphic Design 

Adrian Franks: Creative Direction and Logo

troizel xx: Archivist & Research Coordinator 

Pope Phoenix: Creative Direction and Cartography 

Walter Cruz: Graphic Design, Creative Direction and Text

Justin “Suede” Hunte: Graphic Design 

Chris Walker: Creative Consultant