It may be difficult for us to imagine our childhood selves navigating the complex racial realities of our current day. Poet and former Disney star Charles Waters explores this illuminating shift in perspective with his collaborative poetry collection Can I Touch Your Hair? Poems of Race, Mistakes, and Friendship. Waters will perform poetry from the collection and will also be in conversation with writer and activist Reagan Jackson to explore the complex feelings that children navigate as they form their own ideas about identity and race. This program will open with a special introductory performance by Lashaunycee O’Cain, a powerful emerging voice from Youth Speaks Seattle.
Charles Waters is a poet, author, and former Walt Disney World actor at Disney’s Hollywood Studios. His poetry has appeared in many anthologies including Amazing Places, The National Geographic Book of Animal Poetry, The Arrow Finds Its Mark, and One Minute Till Bedtime—as well as on his own blog Poetry Time. His latest book, Can I Touch Your Hair? Poems of Race, Mistakes, and Friendship is the subject of tonight’s talk.
Reagan Jackson is a writer, artist, activist, international educator and award winning journalist. She’s been a regular contributor to the Seattle Globalist since 2013. Her self published works include two children’s books (Coco LaSwish: A Fish from a Different Rainbow and Coco LaSwish: When Rainbows Go Blue) and three collections of poetry (God, Hair, Love, and America, Love and Guatemala, and Summoning Unicorns).
Community partners: Antioch University Seattle, Youth Speaks Seattle