Gathering Together

     Introducing Darren Rankins



                                    A Rising Poet

Darren Barnard Rankins was born to James William and Barbara E. Rankins on September 24, 1966 in Rutherford County, Tennessee.  He is the sixth child of seven children.  He has one sister, Maxine, and five brothers: James, Kerry, Kevin, Felix, and Vernon.

Darren resides in Murfreesboro, Tennessee.  In addition to working full-time, he has four wonderful children whom he loves very much: Joshua, Michael, Ashley, and Amy.  Some of his greatest learning experiences have came from his young children.

Darren is a very talented poet.  He began his writing career in sixth grade.  He really became excited about poetry when the MTSU Honors Program Director, John Paul Montgomery suggested that Darren take part in the 1994 MTSU Poetry Slam.  This was his first opportunity to share his poetry with other writers in an informal setting.  He began to submit his poems to publishers and found satisfaction in seeing his work in print.  He has since had publications in several magazines and newspapers.

Darren began feeling that writing Christian poetry was a calling that God had for him to do.  He wanted to find a way to make an even bigger impact with his poetry, so he changed from writing as a hobby to starting his own business.  He called his new business Pure Thoughts and things moved to a new level in 1995. This gave him an avenue to distribute the items he had begun to make.

Darren expanded his talents to include designing plaques and Christian T-shirts.  His plaques are beautifully made from wood and then lacquered to a shiny finish.  Darren’s biggest items are his several original screen printed t-shirt designs.  He writes an appropriate poem and then designs graphics that illustrate the meaning he wants to convey.  Many of his T-shirts also contain Bible scriptures to emphasize the message of his poems.

Even though it is important for Darren to earn money to support his family, he also tries to find good causes to support.  He has sold or donated over 5,000 T-shirts worldwide.  Darren has a strong conviction that he can make a difference in people’s lives by helping them to hear the word of God.  He has struggled through hardships in his own life that have given him the strength and empathy to be sensitive to the needs of others around him 

What are Darren’s plans for the future?  He will continue to write poetry to spread the word of God to others.  As his name becomes more recognized, he hopes to expand his business as well.  He continues to design t-shirts and loves to find new ways to share his designs with the community.

Publications and Write-ups


“The Rose and the Snowflake”, Night Roses, Prospect Heights, Illinois

“Grow in God’s Love” and “Inner self”, Face the Demon, July/August 1994

“Poets,” Nashville Banner, April 21, 1994 page B-2

Poetry Slam, Sidelines, April 25, 1994 p. 9

Frog Pond, Haiku Society of America, New York, New York, summer 1995

“Poet expresses messages through plaques, T-shirts,” Daily News Journal, April 11, 1997

Murfreesboro Magazine, April 1997, p. 27.

The Spiritual Herald, Vol. 2 No. 4, April 1999, Murfreesboro, Tennessee

“God’s Love”, Broken Streets, Bristol Connecticut

USA White House October 4, 2004 (We Are a Nation)

Talking Crocheting with Carol Alexander August 18, 2004, and many other online websites.  Search Google 

For Darren B. Rankins

Cannon Courier Newspaper, January 2005

Middle Tennessee business news; November 2002 (Wax Family Printing, LLC) pg. 7.

            Christian Focus Magazine, p. 52 March/April, 2005

             Middle Tennessee State University African American 5th Annual Gospel Music

             Extravaganza, 2005. (DVD) Chapter 2

             No Time for God or You (Intermission) Don’t Lose the Faith, Homeless and We Are a


             AMAG Magazine-Issue Number 10, 2005

            Rebel Poetry, studio Las Vegas, NV

   studio (Poems on the air)  George L Cook III  (interviewed 11/24/05

      Live on the air 1/22/2006

     alone with picture 1/16/2006

             Murfreesboro Daily News Journal, January 30, 2006 and MTSU Records for Concert

             Benefiting  Katrina Victims.



        Conversation May Issue  5/1/06


        The Mufressboro PULSE pg. 20 2/2008 Freedom;  The Day I Died and The Memories of Yesterday   2008

        Introduction pg. xvii in Literary Divas The Top 100+ Most Admired African-American Women in

        Literature (Heather Covington)

        Bridge Your Soulful Journey   The Margaret Smith-Beach Award April 17, 2010 Nashville, TN  



            The Potter’s House, T.D. Jakes Ministries

            Amazing Facts

            Pregnancy Support Center

            Salvation Army

            Chapel Computers for a Bible verse contest

            Hope Ministries

            Exchange Club Family Center

            Kaig Jergenson Medical Fund

            Feed the Children

            Ever Increasing Faith Ministries         Crenshaw Christian Center

                        Columbine High School

                        Tennessee Fosters Supporting Children Charities (Kicks for Children)

                         For Vanderbilt Children Hospital 10/2005

                         “Walk of Honor” outside the Rosa Park Library and Museum complex in

                          Montgomery, Alabama 2007(Brick)

                          Book donation to Middle Tennessee State University 2007

                          National Civil Rights Museum in Memphis, TN walkway the Darren B. Rankins

                          Brick 2007