member my grandfather, an immigrant from Odessa, Russia, singing me to sleep in Russian, a sound and language that accompanied me into adulthood. How many of us bring those early immigrant memories into our adult lives?
I remember Donald Duck Orange Juice in the can
I remember staring at the television screen, wide-eyed and mouth agape, as they reported five journalists had been killed in their own newsroom at the Capital Gazette. I remember how my heartbeat quieted, and at the same time, how it filled with fear.
I am thrilled to remember all the moments young people of come to a realization through learning important for our world in generations to come. Young people learning is our future!
My voice fills air like birdsong
like the wind rustles leaves in the valley
Voices uplifted on the tide of change
cascading over rock and hill
Design lives in my morning coffee mug
Design survives in the eyes of artists, bleary and full of wonder
Design hides in book corners and page numbers
Design stretches through my veins
Kent is salt, squirrels, and snow
Kent is red lights and muddy boots
Kent is a tall tree billowing in springtime wind
Kent is a brick house on a busy corner
The border: Why does such a word exist?
"The wall." Turn on the radio, you hear about it. Turn on the TV, you hear about it. Turn on Twitter, you hear about it. I don't see the point in all of it. These borders--these walls--are pushing us further away from each other. We need, now more than ever, to come closer.
The border is a line that passes through time and never ends
The border is the end of the world
Work is not simple. Work is meaningless--I am meaningless--without passion. I could write, bake cakes, cut down trees, listen for heartbeats all hours of the day, but the weight of an empty box sits atop my soul when there is no love in the action.
Work: where I go because I love you.
Work is guiding, molding, inspiring, challenging young minds and souls...
I walk to work every day to keep us afloat. You, too, will one day walk to work every day. This is how the world spins.
i saw someone make their own music from leaves and twigs
and someone heard and stopped to listen
and distance not existing
young and old connected
Two Mirrors Set Against Each Other Reflecting Infinity
I imagine you in the snow. Bleached cotton drifts pulled back to mud-drenched doorsteps .
I imagine you in Moscow, drenched by the summer heat, strolling down the Street of All Fridays
We stand apart, reflected back against eight time zones, against geopolitical divide, and reach beyond what may be on the other side.
My mirrored heart whispers to you, how long have you gone unseen? Just because you have been invisible to tall men with battered hands does not mean the sea forgot your name. Promises whispered to the wind are unforgotten.
I Would Paint, After Lisel Mueller
I would paint the air charging inward
the gray of my father's beard
closing my eyes for a kiss on a sunny day: that red
Our America is the voice of our heart fighting the scared little voice in our heads.
When you step foot onto American land, America becomes a part of you.
An exchange of backgrounds, conversations, and fireworks.
The voice of our heart overcomes the fear.
The poem that makes you cry in front of your class
hovers in your mind long after, and wakes you up at night
The poem is an unsettling thought; mutinous, like a small stain on a polished table.
The poem can find anyone in the world and give them the inspiration to ignite a change in others.
Hunger for the World
I am hungry for the discomfort that means that world
I hunger to see new expressions of life piling up and pouring over the old.
I hunger for the shock of the new, the familiar, the misplaced and unanticipated context.
I hunger for inhibition to music the freedom to move with passion
My voice whistles like the pine needles on a hemlock
My voice babbles like a brook.
My voice hums and thunks
My voice bubbles like a lion cub's first, powerful roar.
Akron is a place to explore.
Akron whispers the swish and swash of down coats in January
Akron warms me on cold evenings.
Each day like a wrapped present,
Remembering my fifth grade teacher's voice,
Crocuses breaking the ground in early spring
The difference between the world we live in
I write across the borders of memory, the barriers of my mother tongue
Borders are the empty space between our arms reaching for a hug that we fill
My story crosses the border of your ears in snaky lines
Untethered to borders, my pen writes free
My body is a bundle of copper wire vibrating, oxidizing, and hearing.
My body is an engine with too many operating hours.
My ribs hum like the soundboard of a piano.
My funny bone sings bad jokes and corny words to a crowd full of brittle bones.
Only when we mimic the Atlantic waves reaching for the moon,
Even the darkest of hearts have a piece of peace shining inside.
Peace prospers in people who seek potential voices.
Peace will come when all the women in the world have sleepovers and braid each other's hair and talk into the night and break bread in the morning, sleepy-eyed sisters sharing their humanity.
My Hair is a nation...full of Tribes with cultural stories of Breath
My Hands are Wombs....Giving LIfe to everything they Touch
My Eyes are golden chestnuts glancing around the ever changing world
My nails are bright unicorns directing my majestic words