Talking with My Hands

I was fortunate enough to take my writing and craft to two unfamiliar mediums this week: a podcast and video.

On Saturday, March 24, I spent the evening talking poetry, craft, workshop, and ferry boats with my good friends Mychael and Ann Marie for the former’s podcast, So…Poetry. It was easily the most fun I’ve had in months (and I do think I’ve been doing relatively fun things).


Both Ann Marie and Mychael are beautiful poets, although coming at the art from different perspectives and with different tastes. It was such a delight to chat with them and ask (and sidestep) questions about line breaks, forms, and pronunciation. Even if you don’t consider yourself someone who would enjoy a podcast on poetry, you should give it a listen. If we’re all being honest, it’s two hours of Mychael saying profound things, Ann Marie saying hilarious things, and me giggling and snorting and saying things in an apparent-accent that was unintelligible at times.

I also talked with my hands a lot, realized I was on a podcast, and then described my hand motions to the listeners. It’s all very riveting.

You can check out our episode and others here on Soundcloud. Or, search for So Poetry wherever you get your podcasts.


Today, I had another opportunity to step outside my comfort zone. A few weeks ago, I was approached by Maryland Public Television and asked if I wanted to be featured on their WORDS segment on ArtworksAlthough I hate being on camera (because there’s really no need for my awkwardness to be memorialized in this way), I said yes, because I’m in a phase. The phase is called “saying yes to things that make me nervous.”

[Related, I’ve been indoor rock climbing a lot. Look forward to that metaphor-overfilled essay soon.]

In any case, I was as awkward as you might expect, but the team was great and taught me how to walk, read from a teleprompter, and move my hands – all at the same time! I’ve never seen a monkey trained, but I have to believe it was a similar setup. There’s a reason I’m a writer, y’all.

But, in all seriousness, the team was patient and instructive and really helped bring the content I’m so proud of – the Notes from My Phone* – into a new medium with (hopefully) a new audience. I’m increasingly proud of my little experimental book, and I’m excited to see how the clip turns out.

The episode airs in May, so stay tuned for that.

In other news, Spring is upon us, and I have several events coming up. Check out the list below and mark your calendars:

CityLit Festival | Sunday, April 15, 10 a.m.-4 p.m.

Michelle will be reading alongside other MJP authors Dave K, Tyrese Coleman, and Stephen Zerance. Come out and enjoy a day of celebration for the literary arts with amazing writers on University of Baltimore’s campus.

Dead Rabbits Reading in NYC | Sunday, May 13

Thanks, as always, for reading,