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Where have we been? Where are we going?
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Hello friends! You may have noticed there hasn’t been a new poem in your inbox for a couple of weeks! FRET NOT! Kelly and Larissa have been on a two week poetry tour which has been life changing (we are so happy to have met so many of you IRL), but also very tiring. Due to the tour we had already discussed taking a little break, and then it felt even more necessary for our own mental health to take an introspective step back due to the current events. We still believe art and joy are necessary, especially in difficult times, so we will be resuming poetry posting very, very soon, promise.
It would be impossible and dishonest for us to highlight and reflect on the past few weeks without taking a moment to acknowledge the present. We have found our words to not be enough at this time. Rather than a statement we have chosen to begin this post by sharing with you a poem by Fady Joudah:
We hope that until us at PTK find the place and space for our words again, our readers know that there are so many other people in the world who are creating inspiring poetic and artistic movements.
We have been so lucky to meet so many this year! This post serves as a thank you and as reminder to and for all who are a part of our community.
Thank you for making art, always.
As our tour (and Larissa and Kelly’s time together IRL) draws to an end, we would like to officially thank and highlight all the incredible people and places who have made it possible! So here’s a little tour recap! (If you wanna skip these thank yous etc, please scroll to the end as we will be sharing an incredible open call project at the end of this post!)
We began our poetry tour at PANSY, where our new bestie Alina opened up her amazing shop for us! It was a great honor to host two Poetry Painting workshops there! It was beautiful and healing to watch former-strangers now-friends find their words through nostalgia and immortalize them on to their beautiful ceramic creations! We would like to thank all participants for trusting us with their time and for sharing this experience with us! It was incredible! People cried!
We would also like to give a HUGE thank you to everyone who showed up to our Slumber Party event at Pansy. This was our first time hosting a party/open mic and OMG, you BLEW US AWAY with your presence, your energy, your poems, and your love. Thank you to all who read, the turn out was so incredible we ran out of our Certified Hot Poet diplomas!
Thank you Amsterdam!
Where to even start? We were so, so, so honored to have performed at AKIMBO. This is an experimental open mic, organized by poetry mommy herself, Crista Siglin! Thank you to all who came and watched us read from our trapper keepers and a special thank you to Crista, Hamza, the Ida Nowhere space, and all other incredibly generous people who made this happen!
Berlin was so special as we got to meet so many of our Poetry as_ classmates! These poets saved our lives and PTK wouldn’t be here without them! We finally got to hang out IRL with past squatter Winnie as well as (surely future squatters) Marina, Stephanie, & Arielle + many many new friends!
At AKIMBO we met the ridiculously multitalented Caitlin Boulter, who hosts Unicorn Open Mic. We jumped at the chance of joining in on the ORGANIZED CHAOS! It was such a beautiful evening full of talent, music, reflection, poetry and friendship. Caitlin’s generosity as both a host and performer created a moment of contemplation and compassion. People cried. We ended the night collectively singing “Save tonight” and left the bar with the powerful acknowledgment that there are things art may not solve, but there are things it salves.
Our last stop on the tour! LONDON BABES! We headed there to celebrate the launch of our Hot Girl Collab Zine with INTERS(P)ECT! We have been working with Fran and Olivia on this beautiful project over the past few months (and we do mean beautiful like, truly, Fran is an incredible designer! Pls hire her)! The end result is a fabulous selection of PTK poems, along with activity pages, poetry prompts, gorgeous visuals, and editorial letters which will make your inner tween tear up.
Olivia and Fran have given us so much in terms of energy, time, trust and community. We are so grateful, and we know that their (and our) future is a bright star! Thank you <3
It has been our priority to think about PTK’s intentions and impact on the communities we are a part of. The words “safe space” get thrown around a lot these days and we have always preferred action over words (ironic, being poets and all). At its inception, the virtual nature of PTK always made it feel a little surreal, intangible. Kelly and Larissa were just moving pixels, the poems just emails, the readers just usernames.
These events, this tour, has fleshed everything into reality. Kelly and Larissa have hugged and cried and touched outside of their FaceTime viewfinders. Our words now live on paper which can be doodled on, lost. Our readers have seen us read, and laugh, and cry. Reality has asserted itself.
As we sat amid tears and suitcases recognizing that Larissa’s time in Europe had come to an end, and reality would once again be pixels and texts, we received a notification. A notification from a username we had seen many times (@writtenbyme_c) and now have the pleasure of knowing IRL as Charley/C.J. Dorn. Charley has followed us since we can remember (she told us she found us through an instagram ad!) and she has consistently sent us amazing responses to our prompts. Her work was even featured in our first ever zine Hot People have a Spring Awakening! AND, we finally had the chance to meet her in London. And it was amazing! And she’s amazing! And while PTK takes some time to find our words again, we would like to end this retrospective with her poem, whose notification came as the perfect good bye:
Thank you, see u soon,
APPLY TO THE 2nd QUEER & FEMINIST POETRY AWARDS
We have an exciting invitation for our community (sorry it’s so last minute, please look above!) Poetry Trapper Keeper is proud to announce we are official partners of the Unwanted Words 2nd Queer & Feminist Poetry Awards 🏆 We join this moment to recognize the talent and excellence in our community. The theme of this edition is “Decolonizing Gender''. If you are a poet or spoken word artist and your work discusses topics that explore the ways slavery and colonialism have influenced the lives, rights, and realities of Brown, Black, and Indigenous women and LGBTQIA+ people, make sure to apply!
🚨 Deadline: October 23rd, 2023