Soul Psalms, a collection of poems from Zimbabwean American poet U-Meleni Mhlaba-Adebo, is filled with lyrical and vivid imagery that takes you on a emotional journey toward finding self. Exploring themes of family, love, body image, acceptance, and belonging, Mhlaba-Adebo’s words flow melodically and powerfully, bringing readers to a place of peace. The themes in Soul Psalms may be personal, but they appeal to a universal pull: the desire to become.
"....soothing and triumphant―an honest celebration of making it through, and much-needed poetry that one can honestly look to for comfort, love, and strength, silently shouting “Amen!” over and over again. Each poem takes you on a journey that is visual and "....a beautiful soul) is a breath of fresh air, a woman who defines what it is to have soul. I find Soul Psalms both soothing and triumphant―an honest celebration of making it through, and much-needed poetry that one can honestly look to for comfort, love... She is a gift and voice needed that speaks for us when we cannot articulate our struggles.”
—Jacqui Parker, Elliot Norton Award–winning playwright and artistic director of Our Place Theatre Project
Institute of Contemporary Art (ICA), 100 Northern Ave., Boston, MA
The ICA partners with the International Institute of New England to present their Suitcase Stories program, featuring both foreign- and U.S.-born local residents sharing inspiring stories of refugee and immigrant life in conjunction with the exhibition When Home Won’t Let You Stay: Migration through Contemporary Art.
I am one of three storytellers sharing " Seeds, Soil & Water" my story that was aired on WGBH & World Channel LIVE followed by a talk back about Suitcase Stories and the importance of amplifying immigrant and refugee voices.
American Repertory Theatre, 2 Arrow Street, Cambridge, MA
Resistance Mic! is part of the A.R.T. of Human Rights series, an ongoing collaboration between the American Repertory Theater and Harvard Kennedy School’s Carr Center for Human Rights Policy. The host is Timothy Patrick McCarthy.
I shared the stage with Dr Cornel West
Landmark College Belle Brooks Auditorim, 1 River Road, South Putney, VT
MY BODY, MY COUNTRY: A POETRY READINGFree Event.
In every era, there are some bodies that are more policed or “owned” than others. This is what perhaps makes defining our internal and external geographies so challenging. We often undertake an exploratory journey attempting to separate our identity and sense of becoming from social, cultural, and other pressures. Often, these explorations shift throughout our lives. We ultimately are our own countries, and we carry our geography within us.
What are the lines of distinction in terms of who has the freedom or choice of their body? How do we begin to explore the self as topography? My Body, My Country introduces the following artists who will be exploring these topics in a live performance of their written work. This is a National Poetry Month event sponsored and hosted by Landmark College’s Education Department, Student Affairs, and Centers for Diversity and Inclusion.
ABOUT THE ARTISTS
U-Meleni Mhlaba-Adebo is a Leominister, MA born Zimbabwean American grown poet, author, actress, singer and educator who has performed nationally and internationally in Zimbabwe, South Africa, Nigeria, Portugal and Ireland. She was featured on “WGBH Suitcase Stories.” Her poetry collection “Soul Psalms” (She Writes Press) was described by David Updike as “written in a fearless female voice tempered with optimism and healing possibilities of love.”
Shanta Lee Gander is an artist and multi-faceted professional. As an artist, her endeavors include writing prose, poetry, investigative journalism, and photography. Her poetry, prose, and personal essays have been featured in Rebelle Society, on the Ms. Magazine Blog, The Commons weekly newspaper. Shanta Lee is the co-author of ‘Ghosts of Cuba: An Interracial Couple’s Exploration of Cuba in the Age of Trump—Told in Images & Words’ (Green Writers Press, September 2019).
Desmond Peeples’ fiction, poetry, and nonfiction have appeared in Five [Quarterly], Big Bridge, Goreyesque, Hunger Mountain, and elsewhere, and their original music is released independently. They were the founding editor of the literary arts magazine, Mount Island, and currently consult for Green Writers Press.
*Details about location at Landmark College: This event will be located in the East Academic Building in the auditorium (marked EAB-Auditorium). For directions and a map of the Landmark College campus, please visit: https://www.landmark.edu/about/directions-to-campus