Donate to Reading Queer

Help me raise $5,000 before November 15th and fuel the future of queer literary culture in South Florida. Support life-affirming programming by and for the community @ readingqueer.org/donate

Meet Parvati Villarba, Programming Director @ Reading Queer.

“Reading Queer has taught me that Queerness transcends race, gender, sexuality, and class— by which it is an umbrella term for many concepts, cultures, and the universal groups it affects. The organization has always allowed for my voice to be heard. Through the intimate workshops curated, I’ve encountered communities that tenderly brave the twilight of an exclusionary world— only to find the beauty in their inner and outer selves. I owe my self acceptance to Reading Queer and the writers that have come along because of it. Thank you.” —Parvati Villaraba.

#queer #lgbtq #donate #literature #givemiamiday2018

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Squirrels, Sexual Assault and the Supreme Court

I walked to Biscayne Bay the other day and photographed a squirrel in a tree. Behind the tree where the squirrel hung out two cops inspected a white Mercedes Something-Something-SL. The neighbors reported the car abandoned. The cops disputed their claims. One of the cops was on a cellphone talking to the grandmother of the car’s owner. The neighbors were like nah-ah and it can’t be.

It was twilight. Continue reading “Squirrels, Sexual Assault and the Supreme Court”

Reading Queer Literary Festival 2017

2017 marks the third iteration of the Reading Queer Literary Festival, which I co-founded in 2014. This year, Reading Queer partnered with the Miami Book Fair, The Olympia Theater and O Cinema Wynwood to create a series of queer-centric cultural programming for South Florida.

I’m incredibly excited that Chen Chen (Long listed for the 2017 National Book Award – Poetry), t’ai freedom Continue reading “Reading Queer Literary Festival 2017”

Hurricane Irma Report

Residents of Belle Meade suffered minor damage when Hurricane Irma ripped through the Miami neighborhood. Those who live along the south shore of South Little River weren’t as fortunate. Three days later, flood waters remain. No electric, no internet and 90+ temperatures make the situation feel hellish, but the community and its residents will recover.

Residents of other communities haven’t been so fortunate. Follow Nadege Green’s and Wilson Sayre’s extraordinary pre/post Hurricane Irma reporting at WLRN.org. Local journalist at its best.

Preparing for Irma

Preparing for Hurricane Irma is a queer drama. A mixture of irrational fear and ironic humor permeates every thought. Can the dogs swim? Should I keep the ladder accessible in case we need to escape rising water and commandeer the roof? Is there enough cat litter? Water? Food?

As I prepare, many South Floridians can’t afford the gas and/or food they may need to survive and/or evacuate. Many residents don’t have the resources to spend hours in line for commodities they may need to keep them alive. The father of a friend relies on oxygen to keep him alive. He was fortunate enough to receive battery powered oxygen tanks just in case the power is cut for an extended period of time. Many will not be so fortunate.

I made a pot of coffee. I have room in the garage for just one car. The other car I’ll use to evacuate before Irma hits. I’ll load it up with my hurricane supplies and head for higher ground while others brace for the storm with the barest essentials many of us take for granted.

Miami New Times interviews Neil de la Flor about Reading Queer: Poetry In A Time of Chaos

Miami New Times interviews Neil de la Flor about Reading Queer: Poetry In A Time of Chaos, a new anthology he co-editedwith  Maureen Seaton.

Excerpt: “As Miami’s cultural landscape boomed in the past decade — with the influx of major art fairs, new museums, and local galleries opening in up-and-coming neighborhoods — the city’s queer culture was in flux. Reading Queer, a Knight Foundation-sponsored cultural organization, is looking to change that fact by highlighting voices from a community that remains fractured between Miami and Fort Lauderdale. Recently, the group announced a publication deal for a paperback anthology of poetry from local bards and internationally recognized queer writers.”

“’I think it’s the first Miami-based anthology of queer voices,” says founder Neil de la Flor, who has also contributed to New Times. ‘Poetry has had a resurgence because of the political climate and the need to huddle together and connect. Queer writers have an ever greater need to reach each other through every means,’ he says, including social media and poetry.'”

“Thanks to Reading Queer, Miami’s LGBTQ community has had a forum that gives voice to underrepresented stories. It’s badly needed in a city whose queer culture was split in two after the gentrification of South Beach.”

Read the full article here.