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Nikkei Uncovered: a poetry column

Epicanthus

Hiromi Yoshidatraci kato-kiriyama

As we wish you all a wonderful dive into the heat of summer, I am excited to help celebrate the upcoming release of the Epicanthus poetry chapbook by Bloomington, Indiana-based Hiromi Yoshida. While the book’s title harkens toward a condition of obscured views, Hiromi's writing beautifully cuts right through the …

Nikkei Uncovered: a poetry column

Retracing / Return

Noriko NakadaGarrett Kuraitraci kato-kiriyama

This month, we feature the lovely words of LA-based poets, Noriko Nakada and Garrett Kurai.  I've returned to a practice of penning letters, cards, personal messages to be sent by post or out into the ether for recipients I may never actually meet, and when I read through the words …

Nikkei Uncovered: a poetry column

Dancing in the Clouds

Shō TanakaPaulette M. Morenotraci kato-kiriyama

This month, we have the honor of publishing works by two poets who lent their voices to our second annual reading last week for “Nikkei Uncovered”—Shō Tanaka and Paulette M. Moreno. They both took great care in what and how they delivered their words together as a pairing that we …

Nikkei Uncovered: a poetry column

Hailing

Miya Iwatakitraci kato-kiriyama

This month, we are honored to again feature the fierce Miya Iwataki, a veteran activist, core member of NCRR (Nikkei for Civil Rights & Redress), and writer based in Los Angeles. She presents four poems here—an observation of and hailing to the world around her, from the intimate to the …

Nikkei Uncovered: a poetry column

Year-ending

Amy UyematsuTamiko Nimuratraci kato-kiriyama

As we survey the past year of lockdowns and quarantines that started here in the States by mid-March, 2020, we take stock of a wide spectrum of revelations and experiences over the last twelve months. From new personal practices and experiments in the arena of safer-at-home, to illness and loss, …

Nikkei Uncovered: a poetry column

In this moment

Rino KodamaCarolee Okamototraci kato-kiriyama

While we typically link a theme together from the poems we receive from two or more writers, this month we're featuring two voices whose pieces are situated very personally within their own moments, within their own season. Seattle-based Sansei Carolee Okamoto just began writing in 2017 as a way to …

Nikkei Uncovered: a poetry column

Seize—transformation & renewal

Brian Komei Dempstertraci kato-kiriyama

Leaving the end of a long 2020 while entering 2021 with a combination of uncertainty, excitement, determined joy, and perpetual angst, I thought it fitting to have this month’s theme derive its inspiration from the writer and the title of his latest book of poetry, Seize. This month’s feature, Brian …

Nikkei Uncovered: a poetry column

Wonder

Curtiss Takada RooksMariko Fujimoto Rookstraci kato-kiriyama

To close out 2020 and recognize it as a time of challenge, reckoning and coming together, we are excited to end on a strong and beautiful note with this month's feature. We are happy to host the return to Nikkei Uncovered by Mariko Fujimoto Rooks and, this time, feature Mariko …

Nikkei Uncovered: a poetry column

Moonlight

Boshichō Okamuratraci kato-kiriyama

We have the immense pleasure of presenting several haiku from Boshichō Okamura for November. Ever since his grandson, Michael Okamura (of the Little Tokyo Historical Society), began sharing his haiku with me, I've dreamed of recreating a haiku club in Little Tokyo in homage to the Agosto-Sha poetry club that …

Nikkei Uncovered: a poetry column

Reflections

Yukiya Jerry Wakitraci kato-kiriyama

Hello to you all in the midst of October and the beginning of our final quarter for 2020. I’ve asked the folks we’re featuring this quarter to share pieces of reflection, whether of the immediate, or of a lifetime thus far. Today’s piece from San Francisco-based, Shin-Nisei, Yukiya Jerry Waki, …

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About

Pronouns: she/her. writer/actor/theatre deviser/community organizer/educator/facilitator/author; current director/co-founder for Tuesday Night Project, presenter of the Tuesday Night Cafe art+community series in Little Tokyo; author for Writ Large Press; writer/actor of PULLproject Ensemble with aerialist/actor Kennedy Kabasares; steering committee member of the VigilantLove network against violence and Islamophobia (and for justice, solidarity and love by any means necessary:); member of the Okaeri Nikkei LGBTQ network.

Nikkei interests

  • community history
  • family stories
  • festival/matsuri
  • Japanese/Nikkei food
  • Japantowns
  • art (performance and visual; contemporary and traditional); politics; spiritual practices/religious history; Nikkei diaspora.

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