On Sunday March 6th, I participated in The Sunday Jump's Women Herstory Month as one of the 5 featured artists of the evening along with the wonderful Jumakae as Guest MC! It was such a lovely evening to be amongst community and creativity and have an opportunity to share my work along side some amazingly talented women writers and performers.
The Sunday Jump is a monthly open mic held in LA's Historic Filipino Town at The Kaphistahan Grill off Temple Ave. It is run and organized by LA based Filipino American activist/poets/organizers Eddy Gana and Stephanie Sajor. Every first sunday of the month the community of artists gathers under their two guidelines "express not impress and free speech not hate speech." to share their stories with each other, to bear witness and celebrate.
It was an honor to be asked as a featured poet for their March celebration of women's herstory month! It was a great opportunity to be invited to share not only with other women, but also amongst a community of predominantly filipino-american artists/activist living in the Los Angeles area. As a writer and poet of almost 10 years, I found it odd that I never got around to writing/completing a performance piece centered on my Filipinx-American Identity. Of course as many things are, It was a complicated,very hard, piece to write and that in itself a direct result of my own colonization and desire/need to assimilate.
One of my favorite parts of the writing as performance, for me is in its ability to push us through our evolution as we go through the evolution itself. For instance, knowing that when I booked this feature, it presented me the opportunity to finally explore this piece ive been wanting to write for so long, knowing I was going to share with a crowd of folks at a very similar intersection as me being first generation Filipinx-American. Because of this unique opportunity, I was extra motivated and inspired to gather all I had been working on and reflecting about at this intersection of my identity and began piecing things together. Finally The day of my feature at the Sunday Jump was when I finally got the pieces of it together into a somewhat coherent picture if not a complete one.
I shared it for the first time at The Sunday Jump and got a lot of good response and feedback, and have since gone on to do some edits. But here is some footage of my first draft and performance.
I have since edited the piece down to be more concise and to the point, but am still a work in progress. Overall I am excited for where this one is going! I am also grateful that "The Sunday Jump" exists as a space for other artists (filipinx or not) to come together and share! It is a lovely venue (The food is amazing) and the people are dope, so if you find yourself free on the first sunday of the month and want to get some good food and poetry for your soul and body, I would definitely recommend stopping by The Sunday Jump, you will most likely find me there again, with this poem edited and mastered! (Cause you know, life always goes so simply, and Filipino identity can be all wrapped up in just this one poem!)