Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Poem of the Week: Sami Miranda

we is

in conversation with the work of wilfredo valladares and ayo ngozi

we is not the singular

dotted i, black figure against

a white background.

we is the crowd

that moves into this

dance of morning

rituals, this waking

to the rooster crow of a city.

we is the dance

that shakes and rolls

down city streets,

shimmies into markets

for fresh fruit

salsas against traffic.

we is the traffic

rushing past the living

and the dead, forgetting

to write our songs

from images and found objects

and breathe each other's spirits

into chinese medicine bottles

so we can heal

the wounds of our entrances

and exits

we is the song

of migration, sung

from behind the masks

fragile resin, cast from

faces whose eyes must remain

closed so their pasts

do not pour from them,

so their present does not

burn away home.

we is home

where we are pieced together,

a collage on sheet metal,

a photograph behind a mask,

an image

that carries us into

conversation, about

holding a conversation about

a crowing rooster

a ritual,


and medicine

to cure what ails you.

-Sami Miranda

Used by permission.

Sami Miranda is an educator, poet and visual artist who makes his home in Washington, DC. His work has been published in Full Moon on K St, the Chiron Review, D.C Poets Against the War Anthology, and Beltway among others. He has performed at the Kennedy Center, The Smithsonian Museum of American Art, The Arts Club of Washington, GALA Theatre, and other venues. Sami curated the Sabor Sunday reading series in Washington DC, bringing two poets, a trio of musicians and two visual artists into conversation, and is currently working with DC based artists and musicians to create collaborations between the arts. He develops and facilitates interactive poetry workshops for youth and adults and holds an MFA from The Bennington Writing Seminars.

Miranda attended Split This Rock Poetry Festival: Poems of Provocation and Witness.

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