Archive for June, 2011

Allied Media Conference 2011, Split This Rock & Shepherd Express

June 25, 2011

I knew it was going to be a good weekend when I bumped into my Revolution Starts at Home co-editor Leah Lakshmi Piepzna-Samarasinha and a fellow Queer Women of Color Media Arts Project filmmaker within five minutes of arriving at the the Allied Media Conference in Detroit.  After years of hearing about how amazing this conference is, I’m glad to finally make it to check it out!

The highlight of today was the environmental justice tour through Southwest Detroit’s industrial corridor, the most polluted zip code in Michigan and the organizing being done by neighborhoods affected by the polluters.  Our van was led by Siwatu Salaama Ra, a youth organizer with the East Michigan Environmental Action Council (EMEAC).

If you’re at the AMC,

checkety check out:

Our book signing at the AK Press table,  Saturday,  June 25 · 12:30pm – 1:00pm.  AK Press is selling the the anthology during the conference!;

Us at the Transformative Justice Science Fair, 2:10-3:40, Saturday, MacGregor room M, where we’ll be offering you the chance to make little flip cam videos about your experiences with Transformative Justice;

the whole damn Growing Safer Communities track:, click on Growing Safer Communities.  This track was co-coordinated by co-edited Leah Lakshmi Piepzna-Samarasinha, Jenna Peters-Golden, Esteban Kelly, Bench Barnsfield, Alexis Pauline Gumbs and Mimi Kim.


Also, I’m grateful that Susan Firer has chosen to feature “Midnight Terrain,” a poem from The Heart’s Traffic, for her Shepherd Express Poetry Column and Split This Rock has chosen my poem, “American Syntax” as the Poem-of-the Week!

More soon!

my new Facebk Page, civil disobedience in Wisconsin + please help Riverside Chinatown!

June 4, 2011

Greetings lovelies!

Thank you so much for supporting THE HEART’S TRAFFIC & other adventures & endeavours!

Because Facebook is archiving my Heart’s Traffic group, I’m migrating (& won’t be using the old group anymore for updates)! If you’d like to you’d keep in touch with me about news, future book releases and projects, upcoming performances and publications on Facebook, please head on over to this link and click the “LIKE” button:

I hope you are enjoying summer & doing the work you are passionate about in the world! I am currently at the Virginia Center for the Creative Arts for the month — writing, creating, swimming, dreaming with other writers, visual artists & composers, but also keeping up with what’s been going on in my adopted state of Wisconsin & resting up so I can join in the fight ahead!

Inspired by the work of organizations like Voces de la Frontera the civil disobedience at the Wisconsin Joint Finance Committee meeting yesterday & today — check out the videos on their page: — & the statement read by each of the participants at the action:


Senator Darling and Senator Vos:

You are complicit in moving Governor Walker’s anti-public education budget forward.

We are here today to vehemently oppose this education budget and the process by which you have rammed this budget forward. Holding four public hearings in remote areas during work and school hours is not democracy.

Slashing funds for public education and removing the ability for undocumented students to pay instate tuition rates is mean spirited and immoral.

We demand that public education dollars be restored and that all students living in our state pay in-state tuition rates.

You are taking from the poor to give to the rich. Your actions are unconscionable. Shame on you. You take food out of the mouths of children by cutting reduced breakfast programs while at the same time transferring public money from public schools through an expanded voucher program for the education of wealthy families.

This budget is a budget of the have nots and the have mores.

You are destroying the American Dream for working class and immigrant children in our state.

You justify your actions claiming there is not enough money. You justify your actions claiming immigrant children are taking limited resources from US citizen children.

These claims are unfounded. You refuse to implement a fair taxation for large corporations and the wealthy that would address the budget gap—that is not even that big. You are willing to deny opportunity to immigrant youth who are struggling to study hard to achieve college admission and pay their own way.

You are violating the norms of a civilized society when you invest more in incarceration than in public education.

You promised job creation, yet your budget forces school districts to give pink slips to teachers, school nurses, educational assistants, teaching assistants, social workers, maintenance workers, food workers, among many others.

You promise job creation yet you undermine our ability to produce an educated, diverse, and talented workforce.

To the people of Wisconsin, join us—it is our duty as citizens to resist the passage and implementation of this unjust budget.

Unjust government shall not stand.

Lastly, I would like to request help from my community on a community issue that has been dear to me for several years. Many of you know that I was on the board of the Save Our Chinatown Committee in Riverside, California, where I got my MFA. The Save Riverside Chinatown campaign is a grassroots community effort to save a historical landmark — the last remaining and best preserved early Chinese settlement in the US which dates back to 1885 — threatened by development & it’s pretty easy for you to help. All you have to do is vote for this site by following the directions below & to help us spread the word to as many people who will vote for the site — directions & info below!

See you on the streets & in the world!

Please help save our shared heritage by voting in the National Trust for Historic Preservations Community Challenge Funding Opportunity.

Dear Riverside Chinatown Friends,
Riverside’s historic Chinatown is a FINALIST in the 2011 This Place Matters Community Challenge! We’re one of 100 sites competing for 3 cash awards (up to $25,000) and we need your help to take the top prize!
What can you do? Go to
Then follow these steps:
1. All voters must register to the site to vote (your user name and password will be sent to your email once you register)
2. Find Chinese Historical Society of Southern California in the California portion of map
Help us tell EVERYONE you know to do the same! Voting will be open through June 30th, 11:59 p.m. EST.
Together, we will take one step closer to creating a Chinatown Memorial Park!
Han Kwak,
Save Our Chinatown Committee
Riverside, California


Follow the competition on Facebook @ Save Riverside Chinatown