Crossposted from VivirLatino:
I’m really honored that Guanabee named yours truly one of their favorite Latinas on the web.
Some deal explicitly with Latino issues, some don’t. Some are funny, some are creative, some are activists, all are uniquely amazing, inspiring women who, we think, are some of the best at what they do.
I am especially honored by some of my company on the list, including dear mami amiga, Noemi Martinez of Hermana Resist. As a single mami media maker, I appreciate what Noemi does and understand the struggle it is to express yourself in a given medium with no source of funding and with kids yelling, learning, laughing and getting sick as your background soundtrack. Which is why I am asking you to help my mami hermana.
From another sister, Alexis:
Hey loved ones,
I am writing you in support of Noemi Martinez amazing amazing amazing writer, founder of the Gloria Anzaldua Legacy project, visionary, genius diva. I feel such a huge kinship with this sister because I recognize her loving, driven, by every means necessary relationship to Gloria Anzaldua as directly kin to the way I feel about Audre Lorde and June Jordan. Noemi, with her brilliant self, has been awarded a writing retreat, MUCH NEEDED as she is a working single mom who writes and creates amazing zines (like this one: http://www.hermanaresist.com/2009/10/17/finding-gloria-nosotras-zine/) in her nonexistent “spare time,” and she brilliantly integrates the intellectual work of mothering into her amazing contribution to our universe. And don’t even get me started on her brilliant radical artistic world-shifting kids. I gush about Noemi in every class that I teach, I wear pins that she has made on my purse everyday. This sista’s work is part of what keeps me motivated and hopeful every single day. Her work is a big part of what keeps me waking up at 5 am to write. Trust me when I say we would ALL benefit from Noemi having a full week to devote to her writing.
But as a single mom, the opportunity to stay at the retreat center for free does not include childcare arrangements and travel. She needs to raise $400 by November 15th. I know that we can do it. Below is a statement from Noemi on why this is important.
You can send contributions directly to Noemi at csdistro at gmail on paypal.
Let me know when you do so I can hug, kiss, squeal at squeeze and thank you for making our whole world that much brighter!
My favorite method of communication is writing. I believe alternative media is not only essential for the survival of ourselves as mujeres but necessary. I prefer the written word over spoken conversations, because the synapses of my brain to my mouth are cut short-I fumble through languages, stutter what may seem incomplete thoughts to some and these fragile and angry, rooted and happy words are better contained on paper. My writing is a deeply personal; a fiery exhalation of love, motherhood, disappointments and legacy. I am committed to writing to commit to paper and memory truths of our stories, for and as a healing process and to create change.
I grew up in the Rio Grande Valley, birth place to Gloria Anzaldua, this bordered terrain of la migra, politicos, Winter Texans, colonias and palateros. My creative work is framed with this background, striving to connect without stifling the anger in my writing, not silencing one part for the other, writing for the single mami queer Chicana/Boricua, writing for the vegan earth mami who grew up on government cheese and in colonias, the high school drop out who went to live with her dad in Mexico, who told her not to read too much, or she’ll go crazy like her mom.
Audre Lorde says that poetry lays the foundations for a future of change, a bridge across our fears. To take a week out of any month, away from work and single mami hustle is a luxury, a luxury single mamis of color must reclaim. Writing-the transformation of silence into language, as Lorde says is an act of self-revelation but also necessary.
Earlier this year I was awarded an artist/writer in residency at Alma De Mujer in Austin, a one week retreat for women of color writers & artists. The opportunity is awesome- to be made valid in this way was exciting.
Then reality set in.
A week-away from home.
How exactly was I supposed to pull that off?
There is no magical person I’m keeping in my back pocket to spring out at just the right time when I need free overnight childcare.
And I want to have those breathtaking moments of connections that I hear about, where ideas are birthed, actions are taken, skeletons of stories are written-is that privilege that I’m jealous of?
I cannot tell you how many conferences, retreats, and events I have had to say no to because of lack of funds and or childcare. If you can spare anything please consider helping Noemi continue to hone her gift and talent.