Kuwentuhan (Talkstory)

Thursday, December 1, 2016, 7:00 pm
Photos of Barbara Jane Reyes and Oscar Bermeo
Barbara Jane Reyes and Oscar Bermeo read from their poetry, continuing a collaboration between artists, audiences and The Poetry Center, as a way of enlarging this circle beyond ethnic boundaries, in contested urban spaces. Free.
Humanities Building, The Poetry Center
The Poetry Center, Creative Work Fund
The Poetry Center
Event extras: 

Kuwentuhan (Talkstory) takes the Tagalog term, a phoneticized form adapted through the colonial Spanish, as its title, proposition, and starting point. Kuwentuhan (“necessary step toward big talk,” by one definition) is orally based, informal in nature, usually spontaneous, and is always an opportunity for people to converge and share. It occurs in all kinds of social spaces as talkstory circle.

The project’s aim is to open up precisely the kind of human space that barely exists in our technological and “globalized” culture, by allowing a select group of American poets out of widely disparate and polyglot cultural and geographic backgrounds to actually talk face to face, sharing stories, poetry and conversations among themselves and with audiences. They are interested in work that originates from a communal basis, and in shaping a project that encourages collective creation, by putting into action mechanisms for creating “live” person-to-person exchange between and among artists and audiences.

Kuwentuhan (Talkstory) is a project of The Poetry Center and Reyes, supported by the Creative Work Fund.

Barbara Jane Reyes

Barbara Jane Reyes was born in the Philippines, raised in the Bay Area and is the author of Diwata, a recent finalist for the California Book Award, and two previous collections of poetry, Gravities of Center (Arkipelago Books, 2003) and Poeta en San Francisco (Tinfish Press, 2005), which received the James Laughlin Award of the Academy of American Poets. Reyes received her Bachelor of Arts in ethnic studies at University of California, Berkeley, and her Master of Fine Arts at SF State. She has taught at Mills College and University of San Francisco’s Philippine Studies Program. Reyes is co-editor of Doveglion Press.

Oscar Bermeo

Born in Ecuador and raised in the Bronx, Oscar Bermeo is the author of the poetry chapbooks Anywhere Avenue, Palimpsest, Heaven Below and To the Break of Dawn. He has facilitated poetry workshops at Rikers Island Penitentiary, the Oakland Public Library’s Oakland Word Program, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Mind-Builders Creative Arts Center, the Bronx Academy of Letters, Teatro LATEA, Dias y Flores Community Garden and Youth Ministries for Peace and Justice, among others, and led poetry discussions and seminars in schools throughout New York City and Oakland.