Melissa May’s essay is submitted as part of The Body is Not An Apology’s #WhenWeSayYES Campaign. Raising money to build the world’s most powerful radical self love website. Give Here:www.igg.me/at/whenwesayyes
[The above image is of a book cover. The black cursive font reads “Sparkle…
Fellow sassy fat girl Melissa May speaking truth to power. Gooood I LOVE her.
Rachel McKibbens essay is submitted as part of The Body is Not An Apology’s #WhenWeSayYES Campaign. Raising money to build the world’s most powerful radical self love website. Give Here: www.igg.me/at/whenwesayyes
[Image: This is a photo of author Rachel McKibbens. She is a Latina…
I am HOME from a whirlwind spring and thinking about where I want to head to next!!!
In January I had the privilege of running a residency at Truckee Elementary for the 4th time. This year we reached over 400 students and held a performance where 75 5th graders read on a mic, many of them for the 1st time! It was awe inspiring to see so many young voices share their work in front of an audience of 200+ family and friends.
On February 1st I had the honor of performing at San Francisco’s Yerba Buena Center for the Arts in collaboration with other members of the Body Politic Think Tank. Together we created live performances engaging the question “What sits on the other side of your body’s shame and your body’s joy?” It was powerful to play in a space built to represent such a bold question.
A week later I was on a plane heading to Germany where I got to perform and teach with my best friend and world changer Sonya Renee Taylor from The Body is Not an Apology. It was my first time performing and teaching over seas. After a rigorous tour in Germany, Sonya and I spent 6 days falling in love with Paris. There was so much beauty and history. I could spend a lifetime in the Louvre, walking the streets, drinking cafe la creme and eating rich delicious food. I even managed to find a moment to sneak in a Be Beautiful shoot!
After landing back home in Berkeley for a week, I hopped back on a plane to Austin, TX to teach and perform at the Women of the World Poetry Slam, which is one of my favorite spoken word events. From Texas I headed to the North East to teach, perform, do the Brooklyn photo shoot with Shameless Photography, and spend a week in Washington DC where I performed and taught workshops all over the city I also spent time every day with Natalie Illum taking pictures of her for the first Be Beautiful with someone else as the photo subject. Natalie is one of my favorite writers and humans. It was a gift to spend time collaborating.
I’ve been home and have spent the month writing about my experience recreating the iconic Madonna photograph in Brooklyn and getting grounded before taking the next big leap. Now, I am ready to dive, swim, and fly. Can I come to YOU next? Holler at me HERE if you are interested in having me come perform, workshop or hold a talk….I’d love to come visit! Where should I head to next?!?!?
If you have ever been fortunate enough to share space with denisejollyspoken, then you know first hand, the amazing lighthouse of a human she is; the profound love and magic she is capable of nurturing inside you, even and especially on days when you may be feeling more barren than blossom. Denise, I am so love filled for you, so proud to call you friend, so thankful that I get to do so. It as an honor. You are so much love. You are so beautiful. Thank you for being one of the many amazing women in my life who has been so much a part of my own blooming, for letting all of us witness the bright brilliance you are and being an unapologetic permission slip for us to be bright and brilliant too. I love you.
We met covertly, knowing that once my dress came off we wouldn’t have much time to get the shot of a 6ft tall, 300 lb. woman standing butt naked in Brooklyn, New York without attracting some serious attention….
I’m so thankful Huffington Post understands this piece as a necessary part of the body love conversation.
Given that yesterday was Memorial Day I spent time thinking about the amazing people I’ve had bless my life with their presence that are no longer here. My girl Amy Fisher in particular, she has been one of the largest female influences in my life. Both in the way she lived while she was here and in her choosing to leave. She was the first girl I saw kiss another girl, she had an intoxicating laugh and smile. She was a woman who lived and loved hard. I am so thankful to have had her in my life. When I was in my early 20’s high and heart heavy we would sit on the stage of the Blue Bird Theater after hours and talk about art and love, heartbreak and how all the muck made living worthwhile. This August will mark 6 years since she left this world on purpose. I hope she is resting in love and power.