Report Back: UCBerkeley & Pacific U

returned to honolulu last night in one piece! and i’m glad i dont have to cross the ocean again until the end of april. so here’s a brief report back of my trip:

first, i was a guest lecturer for the OTHER VOICES LECTURE SERIES at UC BERKELEY. This program is “meant to raise student awareness of the historical debates about multiculturalism, to help students reconsider the ways we conceptualize identities in the United States, and to affirm student experiences, promote student dialogue and activism, and discuss the role of literature in thinking about interactions between subjects, communities, and institutions.” my lecture was titled: “‘Ta(la)ya’: Pacific Literature, Genealogical Testimony, and Guam’s Struggle for War Reparations.” Thanks to all the students who came out and thanks to ALBERTO LEDESMA (pictured below) for inviting me.

then, i visited a NATIVE AMERICAN READING AND COMP course at BERKELEY, that is reading my second book FROM UNINCORPORATED TERRITORY [SAINA]. they are reading my book right after they read SIMON ORTIZ’s FROM SAND CREEK. what a good pairing around the word “FROM.” i presented a brief lecture on the colonial history of GUAM, and then answered some questions. special thanks to JOHN DOUGHERTY. here’s two pics of the students before class started:

later that night, i had the pleasure of enjoying a wonderful dinner cooked by superstar poets/scholars MARGARET RHEE and C.S. GISCOMBE. thanks to them both for a beautiful evening. and thanks to rusty, beth, javier, hugo, oscar, and barbara! youall are crazy.

then i zipped up to PORTLAND and had the pleasure of staying with the amazing KAIA SAND & JULES BOYKOFF & the beautiful JESSICA! here’s a pic of them in the freezing cold portland air:

then i had a reading at PACIFIC U. the crowd, though intimate, was kind of intense. they demanded i read my SPAM poem. when i refused, they started chanting and wouldnt stop until i read it:

the reading was great (about a 35 minute set, and then about 20 minutes of q & a). after a break, i met with kaia’s ECOPOETICS course, who read my first book. i again presented my mini-history lecture and answered questions from the engaging students. here’s a pic of the class that stayed after the reading:

oh, i didnt mention my hotel yet. it was amazing. it actually had a movie theatre in it! but the best part about it, the pre- and post- reading “SOAKING POOL”:

the next morning, i visited an INTRO TO ANTHROPOLOGY course, where i presented a lecture titled “Writing Culture, Write-Story.” visiting this class was part of the LITTORAL SPACES series at PACIFIC U which features “writers who creatively think about subjects often addressed in other areas of academic scholarship.” it was a pleasure to engage with Prof. CHELEEN MAHAR and her students. a pic of part of the class:

special thanks to KAIA for the opportunity and wonderful conversations!

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