Koa Beck

Koa BeckPNG

September 28th, 2018 (5:30PM) Koa Beck will be speaking at Mills College 🙂

Mills alumnae Koa Beck is the editor-in-chief of Jezebel. Beck’s literary criticism and reporting on gender, LGBTQ rights, culture, and race have appeared in The Atlantic, The New York Observer, The Guardian, Esquire, Vogue, and Marie Claire. Her short stories have been published in Slice, Kalyani Magazine, and Apogee Journal. Beck is the former executive editor of Vogue.com and the former senior features editor at Marie Claire.com. Her writing has been nominated for the Pushcart Prize and she serves on the board of directors of Nat.But, an art and literary magazine.

 

 

 

First task as a Graduate grrrl

Your girl made her first flyer as an MFA grad grrrl. Be sure to follow @mills_mfa_lit (Instagram and Facebook page) to follow some of the cool stuff our program will be doing/hosting poetry/prose/literature wise. XOXO- Amber #bayarea#MFA#grad#grrrl

For our first Contemporary Writers Series for the fall, Tommy Pico will sharing some of his amazing writing with us September 11th , 2018 in the Mills Hall living room at 5:30. Refreshments and yummy snacks will be provided as well. Stop by to hear some fresh, witty poetry from the lens of this talented Native poet. #Millscollege#MFA#creativewritingprogram#poetry#prose#MA#literature#contemporarywritersseries#millshall#livingroom

Tommy Pico’s critically acclaimed books of poetry include IRL and Nature Poem. Originally from the Viejas Indian reservation of the Kumeyaay nation, he now lives in Brooklyn where he co-curates the reading series Poets With Attitude (PWA) with Morgan Parker, co-hosts the podcast Food 4 Thot, and is a contributing editor at Literary Hub. Pico’s many honors include a Whiting Award and fellowships with Lambda Literary, Queer/Arts/Mentors, and New York Foundation for the Arts.

♥Adolescents- Amoeba♥

Californian Change

Life has been a whirlwind of hopes, fingers crossed and a transporting of many boxes up and down three flights of stairs. I recently left my job in Phoenix, Arizona to pursue my Master of fine Arts in creative writing with an emphasis in Poetry at Mills College in Oakland, California. It may be one state away but the change is vast and feel as though I am walking to the unknown.

Last week, my boyfriend and I packed my tiny Subaru Impreza with as much as I could fit and made our journey north to the Bay area. The first day we drove through the Sonoran desert and said bye to the precious saguaro I’ve been surrounded by for the past ten years in the valley. We made our way though the Californian Sonoran desert then stopped for dinner in the pacific coastal town of Ventura, California.

We had made it just in time for the sunset, for a moment it seemed as though the ocean tide was bringing liquid Amber to the shore. I’ve always wanted to be surrounded by water and the sound of it, it felt like good energy. Another reason I’m glad we stopped here is because I heard one of the Islands off the Santa Barbara channel is where Changing woman once lived. This past spring I took a Dinè (Navajo) Cultural class though the Phoenix Indian Center. When I heard this, for some reason it made sense to me and I wanted to be in the presence or near where this island may have been. I looked out to the ocean and breathed. Then we made our way further North.

Also, I had some of the best mole that night in a deserted downtown Ventura. We were also the only folks in the restaurant that night. It was a bit odd but nice to have the restaurant to ourselves for one our last dinners together.

When we made it to Oakland, that is when it finally hit me, I will be staying here, I will be studying here. I will be writing here?!?! Then every part of me felt like I wanted to cling to every safe part of what I had built in Phoenix. Then I started asking myself, would I grow in all the safeness? Would I grow as a writer in my codling? Would I grow in my ego? Then I knew why I came to Oakland, to challenge myself, to push myself as a writer and to read until words started seeping out of my ears. Then I remembered and got off of the MacArthur Boulevard exit and checked in as a new graduate student.

♥PJ Harvey- Send his love to me♥

My cactus

The sands of our skin melt into each other

Like roasted velvet mesquite created by the hands and stones

of his people, desert folk,

                                          my Ha:sañ

                                                             Shi hosh

♥Bent- K.I.S.S.E.S♥

AZ central poetry spot and Cloudthroat

I have a couple poems that have been published in the past couple weeks. One is ‘Raspberries do not blush in the sky,’ a poem written for Anna Mae Aquash and missing murdered Indigenous women. This poem is located on the AZcentral.com Poetry Spot page. 

Another two poems, ‘Rose Quartz,” and “Natives with Neural Activity,’ is located in the new issue of Cloudthroat online journal which an online publication aimed to publish Indigenous creativity and revolt. 

Both projects are founded and led by some talented poets pushing for narratives that may have been unheard or oppressed, I am grateful to be included in their poetry projects and publications ♥

Ahéhee’!

Amber M.

Redskirt

Gasping glochid

Slice me open like a saguaro fruit

Let me bleed, raw red with delight and comfort

Take your carob thumbs and rub the skin soaked

My needles fall out easily for you

Unlike the others, I’ve made sure to stab in all the right places

So they can let me be, to bask in the sun

I was not ripe until

You knew the clouds would be here soon

I was not ripe until

You knew the rain would wash away my spirit

I was not ripe until

You saw the brightness in my stamen

 

Thank you for letting me bask as long as I wanted

Then you can enjoy the crimson of my fruit

♥Delegation- Oh honey♥