Before Anyone Messes With Her Family, She Has This to Say About Homophobia

(Trigger Warning: Homophobia, suicide.)

“I stand before you as a woman with a fearful womb.”

You may be speechless after this heart-wrenching poem, but you’ll be glad this poet found her words.

What’s it like when someone devalues your family in the name of family values?

Find out as one woman tackles homophobia, shame, and a culture of violence to stand up for her future children and her right to love.

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Terisa Tinei Siagatonu is a poet, spoken word artist, and arts educator. Born and rooted in the Bay Area, her emergence into the spoken word world as a queer Samoan womyn and activist has granted her the opportunities to perform on stages. She is also a community activist and organizer, having worked as an intern and poet-mentor forYouth Speaks, to organizing on a grassroots level with One Love Oceania, a queer Pacific Islander womyn’s organization from the Bay Area, the Samoan Community Development Center of San Francisco, EPIC of Los Angeles, and Engaging Education of UCSC. Currently she is the Project Director of PIER- the Pacific Islander Education and Retention project at UCLA.

Video courtesy of Button Poetry. For more amazing spoken word performances, check them out on YouTube and Facebook.