One Youth Poet Laureate. Nine Ambassadors. Ten youth poets who are paving the way to the future.
IN FEBRUARY, WE PRESENTED "BLACK HISTORY FOREVER", modeling fashions from the 2020 Michael Credle Collection, as they delivered poetry & music around the theme of pride, culture & heritage.
THESE POETS ARE
WPGC 95.5's Joe Clair and Mi'Jan Credle
READY FOR THE WORLD!!
WITH SO MUCH going on this year, we wanted to make sure that we gave our young people a safe space to let off some steam, so with the partnership of the PGC Office of Community Relations, we had a phenomenal event called the CRISIS COOL DOWN which also offered lots of resources to help people navigate this "New Normal" we are experiencing.
WE OFFICIALLY HAVE A NEW HOME!!!
Watch the video below to see an early version of the Dialect Program in action - As Patrick Washington collaborated with the young artists of the DC Creative Writers Workshop at Hart Middle School.
CONGRATULATIONS ALSO TO OUR NEW YOUTH POET AMBASSADORS
ARIANNA JOY BOSLEY - Upper Marlboro
DEJA EPPS - Upper Marlboro
DEMARI KLINE - Upper Marlboro
JORDAN CULMER - District Heights
KALIYAH GREENE - New Carrollton
NALA WASHINGTON - Temple Hills
SAINEY CEESAY - Greenbelt
ZAINAB AHMED - Bladensburg
MUNACHISO NWACHUKWU - Bowie
SHEMAR COOKE - Riverdale
NOW THE WORK BEGINS as our YPL & Ambassadors begin traveling the county sharing the stage with county officials at festivals, town hall meetings and other community events in need of a youth perspective. This is the first step to a professional career as a writer & public speaker - any organizations interested in booking any of our youth poets for any functions, please contact Patrick Washington at 301 237 6684 or Neville Adams at 240 426 2629
MARISSA MICHEL - THE 2020 PRINCE GEORGE'S COUNTY YOUTH POET LAUREATE
AFTER THE TRAGIC deaths of several black citizens at the lands of law enforcement, the County Executive called for a virtual town hall for residents to vent and to field ideas on how to rebuild trust. Our Dialect Poets were right in the middle of the discussion offering their thoughts and of course their words.
HERE, OUR YOUNG POETS all got up early on a Saturday morning to take part in the Suitland Sweep-Up & Block Party, in which they cleared the parking lot & surrounding area of trash & debris - all to the sounds of DJ RBI spinning the latest Hip-Hop music! Thanks for helping us clean house, everyone!
THE SUITLAND CREATIVE CENTER
AT 4719 Silver Hill Road, Suitland MD will be our main base of operations.
Check for our schedule of upcoming events at www.creativesuitland.org
SUMMER is COMING!!
DIALECT USA, LLC recognizes and celebrates the importance of the spoken, the written and the rhythmic word no matter where it originates. We realize that even though our inflections & use of language may change between age, race, gender and cultural lines, it is the sound of our VOICES that when properly harnessed, can become the most powerful tool known to humanity through shared experiences, affirmations of love, pleas for peace and declarations of being.
DIALECT OF PRINCE GEORGE’S COUNTY, MD provides artists with the space for expression and the skills for growth as practitioners of the stage arts. We understand that for many, a simple opportunity is the much needed bridge that can lead to success, and so we provide not only basic training in these areas, but we partner with additional County organizations in creating avenues & windows that will assist in cultivating full-fledged careers in the arts for both youth and for young adults.
Mi'Jan, Nala and Marissa speaking with Judge Greg Mathis
Mi'Jan Credle (2019) Michaela Lacy (2018) Samantha Jackson (2017) and Dominique Holder (2016)
SUMMER IS SLAM SEASON! During this time, we put interested poets through 3 months of a fun (but intense) high-octane poetry boot camp. During this time there are slam competitions & there are eliminations. This is no reality show...but there is a LOT of reality going on - poets will leave their hearts on the stage. No one is EVER the same (writer or person) after experiencing this program! Ask us about how to find out if you're got what it takes to make the DMV POETRY SLAM TEAM!!
FOR TEEN DATING VIOLENCE AWARENESS MONTH, our Dialect crew joined teens & adults from all over to explore self-love & relationships at the "No Excuse for Dating Abuse" poetry show & teen summit which was held at Camelot in Upper Marlboro.
KALIYAH WAS one of two poets who won our online poetry challenge & had a large pizza delivered to her door!
Great job, Kaliyah!
Marissa Michel is a second generation American of Haitian and Puerto Rican heritage. She is a Scholastic nationally award-winning teenage writer, published author, and artist. Marissa is also known for being an outspoken advocate for women of color, immigrants, and underserved communities. Her writing tends to reflect diverse experiences of living in America and center on topics of gender, race, and class.. Marissa became a PG County Youth Poet Ambassador at 13 and won 4 regional awards in the prestigious Scholastic Arts and Writing 2018 Competition. Marissa’s endeavors in equity, community, and justice in her school are deeply influenced by her personal values and beliefs. As a sophomore, Marissa is the youngest head in the history of the Female Empowerment Mission (FEM) club at Sidwell Friends High School, co-founder/co-head of the Students for Art and Music club, a digital editor of the Quarterly Magazine, and a choreographer on the dance team. She raises awareness about under-represented POC as well as the complexities of intersectionality through all aspects of her work. Marissa is also a member of the first Diversity and Ethical Leadership Conference Planning Board at her school. Marissa is a multi-talented, dedicated, spontaneous young writer who overcomes obstacles and brings a clear, loud and innovative voice to every issue she tackles.
POETS, EMCEES & CREATIVE WRITERS AGES 13 TO 19, here is your springboard to launching a career in creative writing, performance poetry & community activism! We are searching for youth leaders who are committed to civic and community engagement & promoting change through the arts. We also partner with various county entities & non profits to create opportunities for our young artists. for more info, Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org
sitting in a room six feet apart
Everyone complaining about the cold
How they fear that even a glance makes them sick.
How they long for the kisses and the hugs from loved ones they miss.
A slight cough is a death sentence
Clearing ones throat causes disgust
Dirty looks that they dare not show
Scared that their glares will take them 6 feet under
The pale man with the suits
Who told us lies about what could be done
Swore the possible was impossible
That our dreams were just evils painted in red and yellow
Yelled that our hammers were nailing the innocent to their coffins and that our sickle would slit the throats of the unheard
Now the green paper has turned gray
The impossibles became possible
Well...on a temporary basis
Now the end is no where in sight.
Still six feet away.
Still miles and miles away from a solution
The glass wall has fallen
The top have reached the grass ungracefully
But no one dares walk on the broken glass of justice.
Oh no, this is a curse that is 100 years old
So we pray for us to be spared instead of realizing that the deaths are man made,
Corona can only do so much.
Day 1: I tell myself that this will be all over in two weeks. That this is a sick joke only you seem to understand
Day 2: The experts have now gathered and say they are doing everything that they can; there doesn't seem to be an exact scientist; there is not exact science to this
Day 3: We hear bad news. But it can’t be so bad because two weeks. This two week timeline
Day 4: Alright God, you can cut this out now. Someone left nearly nothing in the apple juice container and I’m ready to purge the whole house
Day 5: Dear God, speak to me a way I understand. I’m having a hard time understanding what exactly you want me to do; I don’t know how to feel being isolated
Day 6: Maybe you want us isolated
Day 7: I am made aware my senior year has possibly reached the end and I
For treating you like a slot machine in heaven’s casino. Throwing quarters into the face of salvation expecting a blessing to waltz onto my lap.
Day 8: I feel like I am repeating a fractured prayer when all I want is for this pandemic to be over
Day 9: You are bigger than any pandemic. Please hear us
Day 10: God do you hear me!
Day 11: You’ve watched me weep until i dissolve and still you wake me up the next morning to put myself back together one salt grain at a time
Day 12: How blessed we are to have tragedies so small it can fit at the tip of our tongues; God i’m sorry
I’ve complained and taken for granted that you’ve snatched it all way
I’m not sure if I should be angry with you for doing so or on my knees begging for your forgiveness, God I am a broken prayer.
Day whatever: I’ve lost count at this point. And I am asked by someone, somewhere else
How unfair is this?
And now my response is you’re correct, this isn’t fair whatsoever
We’ve lived a sinners sinning life
Breaking the laws of the one who has issued us the license to breath
It is absurd you have to ask this question expecting your survival on earth to be shortened because a pandemic “isn’t fair”, that quarantine “isn’t fair” like you aren’t breathing
Look at us.
Walking around, breathing, living, looking all ungrateful
How many times do you have to be told
How many times do you have to be told
How many TIMES do you have to be told
That the oxygen that gives you life can be repossessed at any moment
And you. Are. still. Here.
Surrounded by family and love
This world is a room full of chaos
Ms. Rona is that one friend they brought to the party and is making a very public scene but trust and believe
He will show up
And shut it down.
Don’t act like our God doesn’t give and take away.
Our lives have stopped so he can have our attention like he should’ve and don’t you dare act like he doesn’t love you
Like the name on your birth certificate isn’t the title of of his favorite song on his playlist
The Lord himself goes before you and will be with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged.
(1 Deuteronomy 31:8)