I grew up catching the 42 bus from the last stop to get to the 4 train at Burnside because that was the only route out of my neighborhood. I’m from a place called River Park Towers in The Bronx, NY. It’s located right around the corner from Sedgwick Avenue and Cedar Park, most commonly known as the area where Hip-Hop was started. I reckon this is why I’ve always loved music. In sixth grade, I discovered spoken word from an English teacher, and began to write because it felt like I had a voice for the first time in my life. As an educator and activist, it is critical that I dedicate my platform to work that serves others. As a public service leader, I have founded and directed several poetry organizations that focus on providing platforms for underserved and marginalized people to have artistic resources and a safe space for self-expression. Raising awareness on spoken word and slam poetry, creating access to the literary craft, and placing value on creative writing programs can significantly broaden our community's perspective of the arts. As a Black woman writer, I consider how voices like mine are suppressed, dismissed, trotted on, undermined, or silenced.
The Bronx has cultivated me into who I am today. I endeavor to fight for a society that centers identities from neighborhoods like mine, faces like mine, and stories like mine. I believe I can support future generations of artists to never let this world silence their voices.