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Join CALYX Poets on 4/23, 7 p.m. @ Imagine Coffee in Corvallis, OR!

Qwo Li Driskill

CALYX, Inc. is hosting “The Poetry is Political (TPIP),” a poetry reading in honor of those who’s voices have been silenced. Poets will share how their experiences with intersecting identities have shaped their poetry, and how that is in turn political. We will feature each poetry reader with a blog post until the reading on April 23.

Meet our second featured poet, Qwo-Li Driskill, and watch for more poets in the coming week.

Qwo-Li Driskill is a Cherokee Two-Spirit and Queer writer, activist, and performer also of African, Irish, Lenape, Lumbee, and Osage ascent. They are the author of Walking with Ghosts: Poems and the co-editor of Sovereign Erotics: A Collection of Two-Spirit Literature and Queer Indigenous Studies: Critical Interventions is Theory, Politics, and Literature. A three-time Pushcart Prize nominee, their work has been published in several publications including The Crab Orchard Review, Shenandoah and the Poetry Foundation’s online poetry database. They are currently working on their second volume of poetry, How to Make a Tear Dress, and their book Asegi Stories: Cherokee Queer and Two-Spirit Memory will be published next year by the University of Arizona. They are an assistant professor of Queer Studies in the Women, Gender, & Sexuality Studies Program at Oregon State University.


How can poetry be political for you?

Poetry is an invitation to language to move into our body and transform the world around us. My poetry emerges from personal and intersecting community struggles for survival and healing in the face of ongoing colonization and violence. What I hope most is that my poetry can do the work that it needs to do in the world: bear witness, help others survive and thrive, and aid in multifaceted and ongoing processes of healing and decolonization.

-Qwo-Li Driskill