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Rising Up: Poets Take A Stand


April 17, 2021 @ 4:00 pm 5:00 pm

A BookSwell literary reading and fundraiser for Stop AAPI Hate

Join us to hear four poets from different backgrounds who are concerned with issues of social justice. Lisbeth Coiman, Deborah J. Hunter, Teresa Mei Chuc, and Leonora Simonovis will share their poems of resistance to stand up to racism, dictators, and the machinery of war itself.

This online event, produced by Lisbeth Coiman in collaboration with Bookswell, is free to attend via Zoom and YouTube. All proceeds from pay-what-you-will ticketed donations will go to Stop AAPI Hate.

About the Poets

Lisbeth Coiman

Lisbeth Coiman is an emerging, bilingual writer who has wandered the immigration path from Venezuela to Canada, to the US. In her self-published memoir, I Asked the Blue Heron, Coiman explores the intersection between immigration and mental health. She is a bilingual writer and adult educator living in Los Angeles and her work has been published in Acentos Review, Entropy,Lady/Liberty/Lit, Hip Mama Magazine, Rabid Oaks, Cultural Weekly, and elsewhere online, and most recently in print in the Altadena Literary Review, and Accolades: a Women Who Submit Anthology. She featured in the 2015 Listen to Your Mother Show with her piece, The Violin. She lives in LA where she works and dances salsa and teaches adult ESL for the LAUSD district.

Deborah J. Hunter

Deborah J. Hunter is a Tulsa poet, spoken word artist, essayist, actor, teaching artist, workshop facilitator and social justice activist. She received a Greenwood Art Project grant to stage her original play, Porches, during the Centennial observance of the 1921 Black Wall Street Massacre. She was presented a 2018 Woman of the Year Pinnacle Award, the 2000 Jingle Feldman Artist Award, and was a 2013 Oklahoma Poet Laureate finalist. Although her poetry has been published in literary journals and anthologies she is best known for her voice and delivery style. Hunter has been an outspoken advocate on issues related to homelessness and mental illness for more than twenty years.

Teresa Mei Chuc

Teresa Mei Chuc, author of three collections of poetry, Red Thread (Fithian Press, 2012), Keeper of the Winds (FootHills Publishing, 2014) and Invisible Light (Many Voices Press, 2018), was born in Saigon, Vietnam and immigrated to the U.S. under political asylum as refugees of war with her mother and brother shortly after the American war in Viet Nam while her father remained in a Vietcong “reeducation” prison camp for nine years. Since the age of two, Teresa grew up in the Tongva village of Hahamongna (Pasadena, California) where she still lives and loves. Teresa is a graduate of the Masters in Fine Arts in Creative Writing program (Poetry) at Goddard College in Plainfield, Vermont and teaches literature and writing at a public high school in Los Angeles.

Leonora Simonovis

Leonora Simonovis is a Venezuelan poet and VONA alum who currently lives in San Diego, CA. She teaches literature and creative writing in Spanish at the University of San Diego, has an MFA in Creative Writing from Antioch University, Los Angeles, and is a contributing editor for Drizzle Review. Her work has appeared or is forthcoming from Gargoyle Magazine, Diode Poetry Journal, The Rumpus, Arkansas International, Poets Reading The News, Inverted Syntax, and Tinderbox Poetry Journal, among others.


April 17
4:00 pm – 5:00 pm
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