In conjunction with the exhibitions Air, Land, Seed and Octopus Dreams, 516 ARTS has invited award-winning Navajo poets Luci Tapahonso and Sherwin Bitsui to read their work on Thursday, Aug 29 at 7pm. The free event will also honor LaDonna Harris, a Comanche social activist from Oklahoma.
Tapahonso grew up in Shiprock, New Mexico, on a farm within the Navajo reservation. Here’s an excerpt from her poem “Blue Horses Rush In” from her collection of the same title:
Chamisa, Chamisa Bah. It is all this that you are. You will grow: laughing, crying and we will celebrate each change you live.
The following excerpt is from “River” by Bitsui, from his book Shapeshift:
Night slows here,
the first breath held back,
clenched like a tight fist in the arroyo under shattered glass.
But we still want to shake the oxygen loose from flypaper,
hack its veins,
divert its course,
and reveal its broken back,
the illusion of a broken back.
Albuquerque Poet Laureate Hakim Bellamy will be emceeing the show.
Photos courtesy of 516 ARTS.