Interestingly, the person who taught me to read was not a teacher, it was my mother. To motivate me, she promised she’d throw me a reading party when I was able to read my first paragraph. Her logic was, I needed to be able to read the writing on the cake. So, we practiced syallabic patterns every day, because that’s how you learn to read in Spanish, until I was ready to combine them and make words, and then we read sentences. Finally, the day of my party arrived. My mother invited everyone we knew to a park. There, she presented me with a huge sheet cake that read “Felicidades”. That day, my mother taught me that important milestones are to be celebrated.
Even before arriving at Vanity Projects, I was already feeling the pressure of writing this post; pressure which manifested itself in the form of worry, anxiety, and fear; three emotional states which have become synonymous with me in the past year. I knew for my first blog post I had to choose something that felt as though it represented Miami, while at the same time, it had to be a project that resonated with me personally. So, I chose Vanity Projects to write about for a simple reason: any friend of poetry is a friend of mine. Their involvement at O, Miami’s annual month-long poetry festival inspired me to think about art in a new way. I never thought to unite art with vanity. In this case, uniting the written word with aesthetic vanity would never have appealed to me because in the past that had seemed so, well…vain.