For the past 12 years the Queens World Film Festival (QWFF) has wowed audiences and participating filmmakers with its power to tell stories from around the world in one of the most diversified corners of New York City: the Borough of Queens, and this year’s edition will not disappoint.
Festival directors, Katha and Dan Cato are like the perfect parents who know when to get out of the way when introducing brave, new and often young filmmakers. Former participant Laura Aguinaga confided, “No on...
Host and author Grace Cavalieri with The Poet and The Poem series from the Library of Congress with Queens Poet Laureate and Academy of American Poets Fellow, Maria Lisella. The podcast can also be listened to on Apple.
Honored to find my work in this timely and timeless collection, among remarkable poets——who bring myriad of traditions, styles, and vital perspectives to pressing questions, such as how poetry can help us to overcome obstacles to empowerment, compassion, social change, and educational opportunity. Editors Carol Alexander and Stephen Massimilla have organized Stronger Than Fear into sudden and startling awareness. These poems arrive at their truths with insight and generosity, with courage and spirit.
Photo shoots may be the least invasive channel to allow others entry into a person’s soul, to transform the private realm and deliver it to the public in nuanced ways. This is what Betti Franceschi has been doing for much of her life as an artist, sculptor and now a photographer of dancers.
New York-based Franceschi is the eye behind the current exhibit, Ageless Dancers. Originally scheduled for the National Museum of Dance & Hall of Fame in Saratoga Springs [temporarily closed], the installa...
Feet, what do I need them for if I have wings to fly?– Frida Kahlo
To know her is to love her, is to imitate, and possess her, just a little. A visionary of art, culture, feminism and independence, Frida Kahlo was a complex and compelling figure who is now the subject of an unusual bilingual exhibition at the compact Hudson River Museum (HRM) in Yonkers, NY, through May 22.
This is Frida as you have never seen her before: filtered through the prisms of 75 contemporary artists who have immerse...
I went to Maria Lisella’s apartment in Queens, a walk from the train, the elevated N. She thoughtfully had prepared a meal for me, soup, bread, cheese, grilled vegetables. Her cooking like her poetry takes what is everyday and elevates it to an exceptionally rare place, the extraordinary—my that’s good!—and it’s universal too, meant just for you.
Before we ate, we recorded. I had first heard her read in NYC at a Bryant Park event back when she was Poet Laureate of Queens and her book, Thieves...
A trio of manageable museums are currently exhibiting some of the most talked about work in town: the Hudson River Museum, the Jewish Museum, and the Morgan Library and Museum are three off-the beaten track venues for pint-sized immersions in carefully cultivated and curated shows.
This year, when giving holiday gifts, skip the gift cards, the Amazon Prime products and deals and think way outside that digital, impersonal box, give and share a LIVE experience instead. Let others jam malls and ...
A few days ago, during the inauguration of the new President of the United States in Washington DC, there was a moment when the whole world rediscovered, if ever there was a need, the power of poetry. It was when 22 years old Amanda Gorman, the first person to be named National Youth Poet Laureate, delivered her beautiful poem "The Hill We Climb".
2021 is also the year that Italy dedicates to the greatest poet in the history of mankind, Dante Alighieri, whom we in Italy call “il sommo poeta” ...
You let me, your stepmother,
Take your hand to walk
into the surf, let
slippery seaweed wrap
around your ankles
like emerald ribbons.
We step on the edge
of lacey waves that feel
like butter on hot skin.
You hold back, your mother’s
fear of the sea, fear of me,
sways you. She warns you
Yemaya, the Santeria god,
will swallow you into the sea
here in Puerto Rico, la isla bonita,
land of your Borinquen bloodline.
I tip the balance, study Santeria,
pin a benevolent picture
of Yemaya on my bulleti...
We cannot gather in person just yet, so in the midst of a pandemic defined by isolation, Queens Public Library will gather a circle of poets who will share their work, telling stories celebrating the power of kindness and empathy in poetry. Join us for a special evening of readings of original work by Maria Lisella, Queens Poet Laureate and Academy of American Poet Laureate Fellow; and a circle of Thursday Morning Poets, Nadia Bongo, Marcia Elwarari, Luvon Roberson, and Judy Trupin. Join us: ...
This episode of “Queens Creative” spotlights Queens Poet Laureate, Maria Lisella. Awarded the Poet Laureate position in 2015 by then Borough President Melinda Katz, Queens native and current Astoria resident Ms. Lisella is the sixth poet to hold the borough’s esteemed Laureate title. In 2020, Maria was also named a Poets Laureate Fellow by the Academy of American Poets and to date has three books of poetry to her credit as an author. In addition to her work as a poet, Ms. Lisella has also tau...
The call came
A three-story roof,
not a big building
to break bones.
A day later,
another call comes.
I’m the passenger.
She’ll be there, you know.
I know, I hear myself say,
the mother is always there.
the stereotype, but it fits.
The mother takes him back.
He doesn’t get better.
He never leaves except
a passive remote control.
ward to ward.
From the p...
Making Poetry An dynamic four-week workshop with Queens Poet Laureate, Maria Lisella, recent Academy of American Poets Fellow, designed to inspire, encourage and lead to poetry making. Participants will write in response to a prompt – visual or verbal - or a poem. No previous writing experience is necessary to participate; sharing your work is optional as is time for supportive feedback.