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    Spring backward. #photoaday #flowerstagram #firstdayofspring #spring #lastofwinter ❄️❤️ So yesterday, I ran a poetry workshop at a middle school and hearing the words from these youth, I feel a lot better about the world. One boy wrote a poem & was very shy about reading it. I offered to read it for him. To my surprise, he wrote about people wanting freedom and not being “illegal.” I hope he finds the courage some day to read the poem because these days, hate voices itself louder than love. Our kids deserve better role models. I didn’t grow up thinking about my immigration status, but I think many children have to now. 💔I’m at a very low point in my hope bank. I’m taking notes on how to say goodbye to a country. I think one way is love and one way is poetry.
#loveislouder #happyworldpoetryday This Sunday I made it to church at a Unitarian Universalist congregation. I arrived as a panelist for an immigration and human rights discussion. My audience was majority White. I started with a poem and then my college journey narrative. It is a heavy feeling to be a person who potentially faces deportation or undocumented status and to stand in front of an audience that though sympathetic, cannot imagine what your world is like. They listened to me and the other panelists very actively. One of the panelists, Klara Bilgin, showed us this poster-size cover of Time magazine’s March issue with her own addition “Why America?” At the end I was surprised that most people had comments rather than questions. When we say immigration is a controversial issue or a “hot topic,” it’s true. I got to see it today by people commenting on their experience traveling abroad without borders or their observations of how much labor is expected of undocumented immigrants. Many of them were proposing solutions. I wish Congress were as productive as these people were in their 15 or so minutes to comment and ask questions. #rageatCongress #votesmart #speakup Little sister poem. Be woke.❤️ #ajamonet #poem
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1,000 miles: step 28

My milestone says 4 days to go until the April 10th national immigration reform marches. Today I visited CARECEN in Washington, DC and helped with further mobilization efforts. Up until today my efforts have been making phone calls to immigrants in the DC community and sharing the march flyer with my local community. This famous flyer:


Today I was part of small poster-making group. We only got around to… one poster. And why so? It was pretty huge.  It was a flag with a message. (Maybe over 3/4 of my five feet one inch height.) As you can’t tell an artist to “draw anything, however” my group had to follow a series of Claudia-directions that in the end created a spectacular though painstakingly-made poster. Oddly enough, in the middle of it all, interviews for Heute from Germany.

The camera crew from Heute followed us into canvassing and it was crazy for all parties involved. DC streets are populated by the masses, and canvassing is no easy work. I learned so today. Some people don’t have time for you. Some people won’t make time for you, and they won’t disguise their contempt.

When I shared this experience with my mum, she told me not to worry about those people. Change is going to happen without them. I sure hope so. In the meantime, I share with you my journey, dearest-reader.

I share bits of my being, bits of my history because that’s how I best communicate. And a little bit of poetry heals the soul.

2013-04-06 15.26.01

Hanging on the walls of the National Portrait Gallery in the exhibit “Poetic Likeness”

This is was the Claudia face worn today (one that resembles my mother when she was my age).

This is was the Claudia face worn today (one that resembles my mother when she was my age).

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