You may have noticed that I'm crazy about my job. Some of that is disbelief that I actually have a job that I love in this tough economy, so when I talk about it, I'm saying "pinch me - I'm happily employed." But a lot of it has to do with what we do and how we do it. CUAV (Community United Against Violence) takes a transformative approach to addressing violence within and against queer and trans communities. That means listening to people, affirming their healing and growth, trusting their path toward liberation without relying on shame, isolation, or criminalization that so often leaves us feeling more vulnerable.
That also means that part of my job is embracing my wild ideas about the relationship between the creative arts and social change. I must admit, sometimes I have my moments when I wonder about these parts of myself colliding, the activist and the writer. There are times when I'm upset enough about the state of things to take the to the streets and yell until I'm voiceless, and instead I take to my notebook and write. And for just a moment, I wonder. Is it worth it? Am I really doing any good at all, sitting here writing a poem, of all things, when people's lives are at stake?
Today's one of those days when my worlds come together and I can affirm that yes, it is worth it to write about the issues that matter to me. Tonight I'm reading poetry in a performance event celebrating queer and trans survival and resistance. My co-workers aren't saying, "Are you crazy? Reading poetry when there's violence happening?" No - my fellow CUAV staff members are the ones throwing the event. Pinch me, I'm happily affirmed in the work that I do, both on the page and in the office.
Tonight's event, The Color of My Spirit, starts at 7 pm at the Mission Cultural Center for Latino Arts in San Francisco. It will also be broadcast live on Comcast Channel 76 and streamed over Bay Area Video Coalition's SF Commons livestream. Details are below. I can't wait!
Back by popular demand! Community United Against Violence (CUAV) and the Mission Cultural Center for Latino Arts invite you to an evening of queer and trans artistic offerings in honor of survival and resistance. Join us for this follow-up to last year’s wildly successful revue of local LGBTQ talent. Artists will share a collective vision of liberation through video, song, poetry and dance.
Poet Yosimar Reyes returns to MC a spectacular line up including Nomy Lamm, Maisha Z. Johnson, Josh Merchant, Our Space, El/LA, and more!!
Buy tickets online or pay at the door! http://missionculturalcenter.org/MCCLA_New/events.html
This event will be televised LIVE! on Comcast Channel 76 and streamed LIVE at SF Commons.
ACCESS: Fully wheelchair accessible. Please refrain from bringing scents or fragrances on your body, clothes, or hair.
BREAKING NEWS: May 11th will also be the release of four beautiful new posters illustrating key tools that we have developed during the implementation of our transformative strategic plan. The set of posters, designed by Tim Simons, will be available for a suggested donation of $10-20.