Wednesday, May 29, 2013

What Kind of Asian Are You? Video

Dear beautiful peoples,

One of my colleagues sent me this You Tube video--it is hilarious!  I hate to generalize but some white people don't get how ignorant and rude they are.  Case in point: read the comments--Clueless! Smh

The video is part of You Tube's Comedy Week and is co-directed by Ken Tanaka and David Neptune.



Thursday, May 23, 2013

Please support Cambodian Son film--donation period ends tomorrow!

Hi beautiful peoples,

Do you all know your Asian American spoken word poetry history?  Many people don't.  Let me briefly tell you about a group called I Was Born With Two Tongues.  Listen to me carefully: THERE WOULD BE NO YELLOW RAGE IF NOT FOR I WAS BORN WITH TWO TONGUES.  2 Tongues inspired me as an Asian American and--most importantly--as an Asian American woman.  I first wrote "I'm a Woman, Not a Flava" b/c I was inspired by Anida and Emily's collabo poem "Not Your Fetish."  Dear beautiful people, you need to research 2 Tongues.  Find their only album, titled Broken Speak.  You too will be inspired.

I'm telling you this b/c Anida, one of the members of 2 Tongues, contacted me recently b/c she is working on a film project with her husband in Cambodia and they are in desperate need of donations.  This is how much she believes in this project: she and her husband have put their life savings into it.  They foreclosed on their condo.  They have sold practically everything they own to fund this project.  That is how much they believe in the power of its message.

The film is called Cambodian SonCambodian Son captures the inspirational story of Kosal Khiev’s journey from prisoner in America to world-class poet in Cambodia. The documentary follows Kosal’s life after receiving the most important performance invitation of his career—to represent the Kingdom of Cambodia at the London 2012 Cultural Olympiad. Kosal would travel to London having only taken two flights prior; first, as a 1-year-old refugee child whose family fled Cambodia and, then as a 32-year-old criminal “alien” forcibly returned to Cambodia in 2011. This documentary follows a volatile yet charming and talented young man who struggles to find his footing amongst a new freedom that was granted only through his deportation.

Kosal’s London representation is a triumphant moment for many people in his life, both in America and Cambodia. The film traces the impact and significance of this moment for Kosal, his friends, family, mentors and a growing international fan base. Armed only with memorized verses, he must face the challenges of being a deportee while navigating his new fame as Phnom Penh’s premiere poet. As the pressure to perform and represent builds, Kosal begins to deteriorate. A dramatic series of events nearly prohibits him from ever stepping onto the London stage. From teaching literacy at a Cambodian dumpsite to performing at the London 2012 Cultural Olympiad, Kosal soon realizes with his new freedom comes great responsibility. After the performances end and the London stage becomes a faint memory, Kosal is once again left alone to answer the central question in his life: “How do you survive when you belong nowhere?”

And the final development of this journey seems to have made itself known just two days ago -- Kosal found his long-lost father in France through Facebook. His half sister, whom he had never known, contacted him out of the blue.

The funds that Anida and husband need would allow them to film the reunion between Kosal and his father.

Please visit the website link--even if you don't donate, just going to the site and clicking around helps the project:

Below is the extended trailer.  Please watch:

Please, please donate if you can.


Tuesday, May 21, 2013

The SHE Book Tour, Reno, NV, June 6

Hello beautiful peoples,

As I had mentioned in a previous post, the kick-off to my book tour took place on March 22 at the Asian Arts Initiative.  My first solo poetry book, The SHE Book, is dedicated to a friend of mine who passed away several years ago.  Her name was Brenda McMillan, and she had been working on a poetry manuscript entitled She, hence the reason for choosing the title I did.

My book is a celebration of women--our strength even in the face of seemingly debilitating vulnerabilities and demoralizing experiences, especially in surviving relationships where we may have been subjected to emotional, mental, spiritual, and physical oppression and violence.  Some poems also address racial injustices, such as the murder of Fong Lee, the South Philly High assaults, and immigration laws.

What I tried to do with my book is balance the personal and political, explore poetic expression in multiple forms, and attempt to find a way to have my work actively contribute to community building and social justice.  Towards that end, the profits from the book are donated to Odanadi, an anti-trafficking organization in Mysore, India that rescues and rehabilitates women and children from human trafficking, sexual slavery, and other forms of modern-day slavery.  You can find out more about Odanadi by clicking here.

I also plan to raise money from book sales to support Barrio Planta Project, a community-based organization in San Juan del Sur, Nicaragua, that provides English language instruction as well as arts education to adults and children living in San Juan del Sur.  My friend, Kao, and I visited Barrio Planta Project in July 2011 to facilitate poetry and arts workshops for youth, and I miss them.  Some of the book sales will help fund our return trip and help us buy school supplies for the kids.  Click here to learn more about Barrio Planta Project.

I'm excited that the first stop on my book tour will be in Reno, NV!  My good friend, Elizabeth Parawan, and Iain Watson, a founder of Spoken Views Collective, have organized a performance event in which I'm the Spotlight Series Feature Artist on June 6, 2013. I will also be facilitating a poetry and performance workshop at 6:30pm before the open mic and performance at 7:30pm.  Details and flyer below:

DATE: Thursday, June 6, 2013
LOCATION: 140 Vesta Street, Reno, NV
TIME: Poetry Workshop @ 6:30; Performance @ 7:30 (starting with open mic)
COST: $5 (Open mic sign ups get in for free)

The Spoken Views Collective is part of The Holland Project, a non-profit organization directed towards the youth that promotes art, music, culture, and community building events.

Please check out the Spoken Views website:

My bio page on the website:

It'll be my first trip to Nevada--Hope to see you!

Many Blessings,

Thursday, May 16, 2013

Feature in Philadelphia Daily News

Hi everyone,

On March 22, I kicked off the book tour for my solo poetry book The SHE Book at the Asian Arts Initiative (more about this later).  On March 10, a feature story written by Jenice Armstrong was published about me in the Philadelphia Daily News.  The week before, Jenice interviwed me several times by phone and then once in-person at AAI.

Honestly, I wasn't sure what to expect at first.  I've been disappointed by media articles in the past about Yellow Rage--either I felt it focused too much on the anger or it misrepresented our message or took attention away from the cause we were trying to support.  This time, I was even more concerned b/c this was about my poetry book--something I feel very strongly about in both its content and purpose.

I expressed some of my concerns to Jenice.  She tried to be very reassuring, but admittedly, I still wasn't sure.  When I met her in person, she was strikingly tall--very regal.  As we started to talk, I began to feel more comfortable: she was very personable and funny, and she listened very intently to my responses to her questions.  I really enjoyed our conversation, and when she left, I could only hope for the best.

When the article came out, it was a bit overwheleming to see how big of a spread it was in the actual paper--I hadn't expected that at all.  And then the content of the article was so positive.  I was grateful and humbled beyond words to Jenice for writing such a wonderful piece on me and my work.

Below is a link to the article. I hope you enjoy it.

Brave: Michelle Myers and Yellow Rage Confront Race Head-On

Many thanks again to Jenice Armstrong and to Alejandro Alvarez, the staff photographer who did such a wonderful photo shoot of me at AAI.


Tuesday, May 14, 2013

"Helping Smile" New Video by Lindo of On Point Ink

Hi everyone,

Please check out the newest video by my dear friend Lindo from On Point Ink.  It's called Helping Smile--and yes, that's my hand writing on the chalkboard :)

Please share with folks!


Helping Smile Video:

Monday, May 13, 2013

Hi everyone! Yes, we're still here!

Hello Beautiful Peoples!

I know it's been a long, long time.  I will have some updates soon.  I have a book tour coming up and I also had a couple of features in the media recently.  Also, On Point Ink has been doing it big in Philly, and I'll be sharing Lindo's new video on our website soon.

So I'm just saying "Hi" for now :)

More soon--