Tuesday, May 26, 2009

"I went to Church. Do you have a dollar for an eggroll?"
A request from the last "client" of the day at Centro Pedro Claver!

I feel like we are missing some music...
Look for an original creation by my son Damani
entitled "Ocean's Goodbye".
As soon as I figure out how to post music:-)

I am taking a break. Its hard to do it. I thought I would be able to get away from work thoughts this past weekend, we had and extra day-Memorial Day, and I almost made it through but it didn't turn out that way. I had left my cell phone at my sister's house in Levittown and it turned out to be a good thing. For one week I was able to work on a task without the phone ringing bringing news, or follow up tasks, or quejas, or troubleshooting or...I spent the afternoon with my niece Tina on Saturday the 23rd. She delivered the phone and we hung out. we hadn't spent time together, just the two of us, for a long time. I also owed her a birthday present ! She drove me home (remember my van was totaled:-( !) and no more than an hour later I find out that a friend had been arrested in Bucks County.
she had come from PR to help her niece, who was a victim of domestic violence, navigate the systems she was now faced with. My friend had tried to reach me during the week when my phone was out. I tried to only commit to tasks that I was able to manage. I did not want to take the lead because it was a volatile situation and there were a lot of critical unanswered questions. This morning I went with a colleague to the district court for the hearing and it had been canceled. Money was raised in Puerto Rico for the bail and we are now waiting to see if the transfer will make it before 3pm when the banks close. 10 minutes left.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

November 2008 I did a radio interview for Appalshop in Whitesburg, Kentucky. I speak about Centro Pedro Claver and recite my poem "And Then". Check out Thousand Kites and if it moves you recite inmate poetry for radio.
Listen up and let me know what you think:-)

Source: www.thousandkites.org
Thousand Kites is a intereactive arts project focused on the U.S. criminal justice system.

Adelina's Last Day
at Centro Pedro Claver.
Adelina is going to help her daughter during her "parto".
This picture reflects the effects of the economic crisis on Centro and its ED, me!
I was late opening up. I still haven't got into the rhythm since we had to cut Don Alex's hours and he isn't able to open up shop on Monday's and Wednesdays and Fridayssssssss. Feeling bad and trying to light up the moment, I took a foto. I wasn't that late and Adelina and Don Francisco weren't waiting long but I can't stand it.
It makes me feel irresponsible. I understand I am taking it to the extreme but I hate when I have to wait for folks especially during work. So, all was forgiven and Adelina's last day is today. It was sad. Then I started thinking; I have to find a new receptionist. I have a meeting with Proyecto Ayuda tomorrow and hopefully they have someone.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Charles Coaches Julia

So I was accepted and in April started the Nonprofit Executive Leadership Institute at Bryn Mawr college. The program is intensive focusing on my development as an individual leader as well as a leader within my org Centro Pedro Claver.

I was provided an executive coach-Charles.
Our first session on campus was a little weird.
Charles gave me feedback with his eyes closed
and that inspired a very active and dramatic internal dialogue.
I tried to convince myself that we all have different styles of taking in information and responding.
there was one moment where I just stared at him and visualized the creation of a new
character for a performance. I definitely will steal the physicality for future study!

Ok-enough bustin' on Charles.
we had our second session and I was quite anxious about it.
I wasn't prepared and was realizing the traits that were documented in my
Myers Brigg Type Indicator, of which I am a Pressure-Prompted ENTJ (Extraversion, Intuition, Thinking, Judging). That is another story!
It turned out to be good phone session-great so I didn't have to see him close his eyes.
Here are notes from our conversation:
  • I am creating crisis
  • I am 35% proactive and 65% reactive on the job. these are my numbers and it is an improvement!
  • I need to create a timeline for and invest in the board development work so that our new board can be self-sufficient
  • board needs to set and agenda looking up and out-the capacity and the leadership is there
  • I need to achieve connectivity with my staff, be centered so that we can move forward
  • I need to ask how my voice can be helpful during times of crisis
  • I need to have frequent staff meetings with status reports
  • Share my vison, the vision, their vision
the following notes I like the best:-)
  • I need to take time to reflect (a beach somewhere maybe)
  • the intellectual needs to be in alignment with the heart stuff
  • Internal integrity is important-if there isn't any then we become splintered and disconnected-this is so true Charles!
  • I need to change my language, be more definitive-stop with the namby pamby (my words) "I'm gonna try to do it" stuff
  • My internal dialogue needs to be up to speed with my outward projection (this refers to my superb acting ability to look like I am direct tough no nonsense, when I am insecure on the inside.
  • I have all that I need to...
My homework and workwork:
  • access and transform in to role as leader
  • help frame my vision, craft my message
  • Consult with artist me to be the leader that I want to be
I apologize to Charles and his closed eyes talk because this session helped! Its amazing what $5,500. can buy. Oh yeah, I am a scholarship student! Never mind!

Monday, May 11, 2009

On the Way To Work

In the middle of "but fuck" nowhere
eavesdropping on two day laborers
waiting for the 39 bus
Utuado Old timers
Puerto Rican flag on a chain linked fence
J+J Multiservices
ATM inside Susquehanna Market
47 bus stop
Stop the Violence mural by P.A.G.N. mural 1992
tan, brown, beige hands reaching up to 26 names
47030 reading PECO energy meter
My back is to the street
#1 Chinese Kitchen
2nda Iglesia Nueva Jerusalem
Jose Ali's forest mural between Huntingdon+Lehigh
Passing El Bohio and my morning coffee,
can't get off the bus
La Guadalupana Grocery-Los Mexicanos arrive on 5th and somerset
Delicia's Bakery
Beware of the dog
Sunshine restaurant on the way to what was the Girls Center
Deja Vu
Jhoandra Reatuarante and Dominican Coffee
Don Alex is waiting at the front door of the Centro
He says that he usually gets up early and its no problem
He can open up...
Work and travel after the crash.
image detail of a Johnny Irizarry '09 sculpture

Friday, May 8, 2009


5 days later

water, water
3 for 3 life saved
saved life
rubber caresses water
water caresses rubber
sliding fast
40 miles per hour
fast or slow
floating on a thin slice
of air, of air
the hydroplane
my body is weightless
for once
for 1.5 seconds
control is suspended
the gods godesses
jesuses marys
allah buddah
orishas ahs
ahs ahs ahs
they sing and dance
swim inside the raindrops
kiss my lips
and Damani's hands
Mami's suspended threads of silk
Papi's pulled caramel toffee
hold our breasts, firm and still
straight and away
from broken glass
blowouts, dented steal,
flying doors
hoods, trunks
2 jembe drums
hold onto our shoulders
saving our hands
they will wait, wait
for our hands to speak to them
they promise
conversations for tomorrow
3 for 3
life saved
saved the day
hitting head on
1.5 seconds, gone
hitting sound, pounding
vibrating through space
back to life
stop to start
all over again
3 for 3
lives to celebrate
dance on
suspended threads of silk
and pulled toffee
kissing lips and fingers
made of black and white keys
1/2 notes sing
to black tar paved oceans
sing to wild flowers purple red
on the side of the road
3 saved lives
no time for regret
no time for fear or longing
1.5 seconds gone
in the light
everything is permitted

Friday, May 1, 2009

This proposal is creeping on the back of my neck!
Life has gotten in the way
it forces me to question my priorities!
I try to focus...
family is important
the reason for all of this
work, art, love
I download Luz Selena's pic and post
my son Damani and mi hermano Johnny.