Poetry for everyone.
"All poets, all writers are political. They either maintain the status quo, or they say, ’Something’s wrong, let’s change it for the better.’" - Sonia Sanchez
"I think one of the things that people tend to forget is that poets do write out of life. It isn't some set piece that then gets put up on the shelf, but that the impetus, the real instigation for poetry is everything that's happening around us." - Rita Dove
"Poetry and beauty are always making peace. When you read something beautiful you find coexistence; it breaks walls down." - Mahmoud Darwish
Poetry Asylum creates diverse platforms outside privileged spaces to bring poetry to traditionally marginalized communities through open dialogue, innovation, collaboration & advocacy [& in some cases, bring marginalized voices INTO privileged, white spaces]. In recognition of the urgencies of our political moment, Poetry Asylum aims to provide refuge for underrepresented voices by celebrating the expansive field of language & expression in all its forms.
We want to build networks around the idea that poetry is egalitarian, humanist & political. In a nutshell: poetry to the people, for the people, by the people. We will live in both virtual & physical realms––offering workshops, readings, events, an online magazine, etc. for established/emerging writers as well as those considered to be on the fringe: incarcerated individuals, veterans, elderly, disabled, immigrants, refugees, among others.
Here are some general ideas of how we're going to make shit happen & fuck things up 'cause shit's real fucked up & has been for a long fucking time #fuckwhitesupremacy #weareallonstolenland:
Make spaces for poetry/poetics outside of academia, moving away from purely academic context of poetics & build an inclusive hub where marginalized voices feel safe & heard
Reinvigorate poetic & intellectual praxis as a working class & labor-informed activity
Foster a transnational, cross-border, gender fluid & multilingual orientation toward poetry
Support intergenerational poetry connections, relationships & honoring of elders & indigenous communities
Archiving & recording & keeping poetry work & workers in public view & collective memory
Skillbuilding & sharing through poetry
Break through cliques & institutional walls
Find pathways to compensate all our artists
Donate to various causes & make reparations to indigenous people whose land we are on
De-whiten poetry in Minnesota & bring to focus the erasure of non-white voices, combat white supremacy & patriarchy within poetry
Be messy & weird & raw & value realness over polish
Challenge the neoliberal value placed on “professionalism”
Recognize the spiritual value & purpose of art & poetry
Advocate for silenced voices & be the bridge for those in our interracial-generational-gender-queer-immigrant-refugee-incarcerated-veteran communities
Make poetry events celebratory, life-giving & perhaps fun [music, breaking bread together, multiple art forms & aesthetics, explore different avenues & networks]
P.S. We reserve the right to make mistakes & hopefully learn from them, but it's part of our process. This is the loveforce partnership of two WPOC poets with day jobs, numerous obligations & general GenX malaise/fatigue/ennui––we ask for your patience & consideration. If not, fuck off! No doubt we'll piss off plenty of racists, misogynists & bigots. If you have serious beef with us & what we're trying to do or say, go start your own damn organization. #sorrynotsorry
WE ARE 100%: ANTI-RACISM, ANTI-WHITE SUPREMACY, ANTI-TRUMP, ANTI-CAPITALISM, ANTI-BORDERS, ANTI-WALLS, ANTI-HOMOPHOBIA, ANTI-TRANSPHOBIA, ANTI-PATRIARCHY, ANTI-MISOGYNY, ANTI-TOXIC MASCULINITY, ANTI-WAR, ANTI-NRA, ANTI-GUNS, ANTI-VIOLENCE, ANTI-SEXUAL ABUSE, ANTI-HUMAN TRAFFICKING, ANTI-PRISONS, ANTI-DETENTION CENTERS, ANTI-CONSERVATIVE BULLSHIT, ANTI-HIERARCHIES, ANTI-RELIGION AS DOCTRINE, ANTI-WILLFUL IGNORANCE, ANTI-INTELLUCTUALISM AS EXCLUSION, ANTI-GASLIGHTING, ANTI-JERKS
For more up-to-the-minute rants & ravings & random shit, event invites, articles that seem essential to our survival, etc. etc. etc.,
Please feel free to join/follow/like our Facebook page. Yeah, Facebook seriously sucks, but here we are. We're also on Twitter & Instagram, but unfortunately too #oldAF for Snapchat.