ORGANIZER: Donna Snyder
Tumblewords Project presents – 100 Thousand Poets for Change – a writing workshop by Rubi Orozco Santos
Poets, musicians, and artists around the world will stage events to take place simultaneously on September 30th in the sixth annual celebration of poetry, art and music to promote social, environmental, and political change. Tumblewords Project will again participate with the global poetry event, as we have since the first in 2011. This year, Rubi Orozco Santos will lead our workshop addressing the power of poets to effect change in the world.
Rubí Orozco Santos grew up listening to her grandmother improvise poems about the landscapes of Puebla. Her work was first published at the age of 17 in the Border Voices Literary Anthology. That same year, she hopped on the Sun Metro bus (route 14) to attend her first protest in support of the EZLN.
She sees poetry as an ancestral tradition that is an integral part of radical self-care: a means of reclaiming voice and space, of articulating truths to make them visible, of connecting directly across external human differences to the human spirit. Rubi has a Bachelor’s Degree in Health Sciences from the University of Texas at El Paso and a graduate degree in Public Health from the University of California at Berkeley, and works as a health educator and grant writer. She has also studied creative writing and literary translation with Miguel Angel Zapata, Connie Wassem, and the late Alfred Arteaga.
She practiced writing in El Paso’s Tumblewords Project, served as Editor of BorderSenses Literary Magazine (2000-2002), and learned the tradition of the décima espinela from Sergio Gutierrez (2007-2009). She read her poems at a jazz club in Austin, on International Avenue in Oakland,California, and at the Barbed Wire Open Mic Series in El Paso. Her first collection of poems, Inventos Míos. was released in August of 2018 with the support of the City of El Paso’s Artist Incubator Program. Its poems are inspired by the history of nixtamalization and its practice in the borderland and is based on observations and interviews with culture bearers.