poetry

Poetry for Incarcerated Youth With Matthew Cuban

This week, I’m joined by Matthew ‘Cuban’ Hernandez, a poet, speaker, and performance coach from Jacksonville, Florida. He has toured as far as Abu Dhabi and nearly every major city in the United States and Europe, performing, teaching and coaching poetry. 

 Matthew is the author of 3032, and is currently fundraising to provide 3,032 copies of his book to incarcerated youth in the Greater Los Angeles area and beyond. A teaching artist for nearly ten years, Matthew has spent the last four years working in youth detention centers across LA County. He believes allowing young people to see themselves reflected in art will empower them with the knowledge that they also have a story to tell. 

 A powerful performer as well, he has opened for artists such as Wu-Tang and has performed for platforms like BuzzFeed and NPR. Matthew is also a three time Southern Fried poetry slam champion and an award-winning poetry coach. Cuban’s favorite activity is making people feel great, including through poetry. 

 On this episode, Matthew shares how he started writing poetry and what inspires his work, as well as what it’s like teaching poetry with young people and campaigning to get their art funded. We talk about the relationship between creativity and vulnerability, how to practice self-love from secondary trauma, and what it’s like to live as an empath. Enjoy our hugging, laughing, and “singing”, in addition to three of Matthew’s incredible poems. 

 You can support Matthews Kickstarter here https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/3032bookgiveaway/matthew-cuban-3032-books-of-poetry-to-incarcerated-youth

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Celebrating 3 Years of Expression

Next week marks the 3-year anniversary of the Live and Online: Expression Session. Each month, we have been honored to have internationally recognized poets and spoken word artists join us as features.

To celebrate, this week’s episode is a compilation of poetry shared by some of our pasts features. I really enjoyed putting this episode together for you and reminiscing on the powerful poetry that our past contributors have shared.

If you are looking for your poetry and spoken word fix, this episode is for you.

The Live and Online: Expression Session is a monthly writing workshop that brings together writers, creatives, and poets from around the world. The experience culminates with a performance by a featured artist.

If you’re interested in connecting with a diverse community of writers, creatives, and poets, join us for our next session this Sunday, June 30th. Dates and details can be found at tomearl.com/events.

Want to check out the full episode and interview of the poets from today’s episodes?

Here they are:

Matt Sedillo - tomearl.tom/matt (link to - http://www.tomearl.com/blog/2017/6/16/expression-session-matt)

Shelby Birch - tomearl.com/shelby (link to - http://www.tomearl.com/blog/shelbythepoet)

Dania Alkhouli ‘Lady Narrator’ - tomearl.com/dania (link to - http://www.tomearl.com/blog/dania

Destinny Fletcher - tomearl.com/destinny (link to http://www.tomearl.com/blog/destinny)

Super B - tomearl.com/superb ( http://www.tomearl.com/blog/superb)

Lady K - tomearl.com/ladyk (http://www.tomearl.com/blog/ladyk)

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Lady K will be our feature on this week's edition of the Live and Online: Expression Session.  Register below! 

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Art is Like Breathing With Lady K

This week, I’m joined by poet-entrepreneur Lady K. We talk about one of Lady K’s passions, ART, and its ability to facilitate self-care, activism, and expression.

Lady K is a fourth year student at the University of Florida double majoring in African American Studies and Political Science, with a specialized tract in International Relations and a minor in Arabic. Upon graduation, she will attend law school. On campus, she is active with her school’s competitive policy debate team.

Lady K is a published author, national award winning writer, public speaker, and civil rights activist. By combining her passion for words and policy, Lady K continues to seek solutions to bring about a sustainable peace domestically and abroad.

You can learn more about Lady K by visiting her website.

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Lady K will be our feature on this week's edition of the Live and Online: Expression Session.  Register below! 

If you'd like to learn more about T.H.E. Celebration Academy.  Here's 30 days of Free Membership.

Self-Reflection, Transformation and Poetry with Abstract C.I.M

On this week’s episode, I interview spoken word artist Abstract C.I.M.

Abstract and I tackle self-love and self-respect as the key to fulfillment and happiness. We also talk about the importance of knowing yourself and being self-reflective, and how Abstract incorporates it into her poetry.

Abstract C.I.M is a spoken word artist and speaker. She has won and placed in several poetry slams and competitions across the country, and has toured and performed with artists such as Def Jam Poet Red Storm and Tyrese Gibson. She received her Bachelor of Arts degree in English with a Creative Writing Concentration and a minor in Theatre at Georgia State University.

A native of Augusta, GA, Abstract is thriving and advancing towards her goal of running an all-inclusive creative and corporate writing business in her newfound home of Atlanta while touring the world to spread her messages of love and self-worth.

I hope you enjoy this deep and inspiring episode!

You can learn more about Abstract by visiting her website. You can find the show notes for this week’s episode here.

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Abstract C.I.M will be our feature on this week's edition of the Live and Online: Expression Session.  Register below! 

If you'd like to learn more about T.H.E. Celebration Academy.  Here's 30 days of Free Membership.

South Africa, Service and Birthday Reflections with Shelby Birch

On this week’s episode I interview author, poet and activist Shelby Birch from her Peace Corp assignment in South Africa.

 Shelby shares some of the highlights and surprises of her service. She also reflects  on her activism, and how overcoming challenges, has helped shape her worldview and aided her in becoming her best self. 

 Shelby brazenly tells her story through her writing, and her strong belief in wisdom, artistic freedom, and expressionism shines through. Her most recent published book, ‘Lit’ is a powerful illustration of how she uses poetry as a mirror to examine issues on womanhood, blackness, awkwardness, and heartbreak.

You can follow Shelby Birch on Instagram @shelbybirch

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Interfaith, Creative Writing, and Magic with Alex Sullivan

Poet and editor Alex Sullivan is studying the ways religion and and culture interact, with a focus on postcolonial and diaspora studies.  So it was no surprise when our conversation this week went into the areas of interfaith work, and big vocabulary words like intersectionality.

This is also Alex’s birthday week so we couldn’t resist talking about cool magic spells, and some really terrifying things like reading poetry OUT LOUD.

Alex has her BA in both Religious Studies and Social Science, and is currently doing her Masters at NYU’s Center for Experimental Humanities.  She edits for GSAS literary journal Caustic Frolic and believes there’s beauty in everything and she is always looking for it.

Check out this week’s beauty-full episode.

You can follow Alex on Facebook and Instagram.

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An Intersectional Dialogue With Claudia Alick

I am really excited to share this one with you.  This week’s episode is unique and explores a new format.  I sit down with intersectional inclusion expert, artist and digital nomad Claudia Alick.  

Rather than an interview, Claudia and I had a back and forth conversation.  Both of us asked each other questions and explored the answers together.

During our dialogue, we covered topics such as: 

  • Claudia's Listening Tour
  • Leadership 
  • Inclusion and Accessibility 
  • Intersectionality 
  • How we both got into the work we are in. 

It was really fun exploring this format.  Both Claudia and I had some real ‘aha moments’ during this one. 

You will love this unique and exciting episode.  

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"To Be Black Queens By Any Means.” - An interview with Destinny Fletcher

This week’s episode is pure magic and power.  

I interview spoken word artist and community advocate Destinny Fletcher.  Destinny’s mission is to engage the community through womanhood, self-awareness, and body positivity. 

Destinny spits 3 dope poems during this interview and shares the origin story behind her mantra, "To Be Black Queens By Any Means.” 

Plus we talked about: 

  • What inspires you to be you.
  • What self-care and self-love looks like.
  • How to gain self-awareness.
  • How to have badass confidence. 

Destinny is one of my favorite poets and SHE IS FROM MY HOMETOWN OF MILWAUKEE, WI.  What more could you ask for from an episode?  

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If you'd like to learn more about T.H.E. Celebration Academy.  Here's 30 days of Free Membership.

Interview With Ash S. - Budding Poet and Psychologist in Training

On this week’s episode I interview budding poet and phycologist in training Ash S.  

We talked about:

  • Gender
  • Being Non-Binary
  • Langston Hughes
  • Is the Universe Kind? 

Plus Ash shares 4 brilliant and inspiring poems. 

Ash was authentic, open and vulnerable in this interview.  I really learned a lot and was grateful for the opportunity.   

If you'd like to learn more about T.H.E. Celebration Academy.  Here's 30 days of Free Membership.

Live and Online: Expression Session - October Edition (Featuring Kezia)

On this week’s episode we have the amazing Kezia as our guest!  Kezia Gilyard is a nonbinary trans masculine person. They work with transgender youth in South Florida.

Kezia is also a poet and artist.  Check out this line from one of the poems they performed: 

“I love you as a promise,

So I keep it a secret. 

I wrote it down and hid it in my tear duct.” 

YES!  In addition to sharing powerful poetry, Kezia also talked about being the LGBTQ Coordinator for a school district in South Flordia. And offered important resources for anyone working with students who are LGBTQIA+.

To contact Kezia: Keziagilyard @ gmail.com

Here are the links for the videos Kezia references: Video 1 and Video 2.

Register to attend this Sunday's Live and Online: Expression Session featuring SuperB:

OR LISTEN TO THE INTERVIEW AS A PODCAST BELOW OR ON ITUNES.