Matthew Kaplan Photography

Slam Diaspora Event at ARTery_SE gallery in Hegewisch on 4/27/23 

Snippets of verse and scenes captured from the bilingual poetry "Slam Diaspora" held Thursday evening at ARTery_SE gallery in Chicago's Hegewisch neighborhood, which I was privileged to attend. A multigenerational expression of life, love and genuine community. A cry from the heart of the southeast side, and other sides too.

"... poisoned our lakes but we still swim in it. Lead levels so high South C's boys they dropping dirty since birth. Then go tag up the viaducts with names conjured up around bonfires of shingle and tires. BOOM, BUST and BLIGHT, echoing American Pie, this will be the day that I avoid the graveyard metaphor ..."

"...If I didn't wear Spanish so proudly, I would lose it. But I speak and I live in Spanish And the one time I don't change the language option won't kill it. I like the way my tongue switches positions when I change languages. The way Spanish makes me talk faster and louder. The way it changes my voice and the way it trips the tongue when saying...."


"...Remember, you were sent from the heavens And as consequences To those that caused our grievances Child where the sun rises You carry sunshine and you better know it..." 


 (Transcribed from my intermittent audio recordings. Line breaks and punctuation my own. Apologies to the poets quoted here, Crystal, Maria, Oscar, for any botched editing. And even more so to those not quoted. Check out posts from @Artery_SE for more content from the slam. I found it revelatory.)

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