• Angelica De Jesus

#PPPR + Yagrumo Project: A (Brief) Reflection

Poster inside Poke-sí restaurant in Arecibo, Puerto Rico. 2020

[Image description: Centered on a yellow background is an illustration of a Black feminine person in hoop earrings lowering their head to showcase the red and white hibiscus flowers adorning a lush afro. Above and below the illustration is black text which reads: "Pensar es altamente femenino"]

After five(5) full days of visiting w/ land + plants + people of Puerto Rico, our group of 26(ish) participants were asked by the organizing team to complete a final reflection using 3x3 Instagram "tiles". For this project we are encouraged to be creative & upload a variety of visual imagery (video, pictures, etc) to express our experiences within this project.

To no ones surprise, I'm struggling with what to post.

After all, there were so many levels of learning for me: internal, interpersonal, organizational, intergenerational, historical, geopolitical, critical, systemic, (Afro)diasporic, transnational, microscopic, and geological (to name a few).

Would posting a picture of me napping adequately describe how much i need to sit with all my learnings and feelings?

Lol, no. That wouldn't fit.

Instead I'll share my chosen reflection plan + a "wish list" reflective "outputs" I'd share if time+ my energy were infinite. Chosen reflection:

- first square: images of me in the central mountain & coastal regions (Adjuntas, Utuado, Arecibo)

- second square: a video of me flipping through the notebook i brought everywhere

- third square: images of me in the city (Santurce)

Wish List:

- a video narrating the different, sometimes hyper-local words we learned to descibe everything from money to birds.

- a video performance of my dances with a yagrumo leaf

- writing letters of gratitude to the land+people+ plants+ as a group of graduate students

- a dramatic reading of this white (oil industry) settler-pendejo's review of Arecibo * contrasted with a video montage of the group's video, photos, and reflections to highlight the importance of reciprocity and the dangers of tourism economies (& the people this attracts).

-a more fleshed-out, finished poem

- the facial expressions of hostel guests from France as we talked about Tego Calderon (one of many AfroBoricua founders of reggaeton) & his significance in shaping musical & cultural life locally and globally.


OKAY. Its planned, time to do the thing.

* I found this while searching the name of the restaurant housing the image included in this post.

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 Angélica De Jesús (2021)

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