National Poetry Month: Valerie Ibarra '99
Posted 04/19/2017 08:13AM

Valerie Ibarra '99 is an Organizer of Poems Under the Dome, the annual celebration of National Poetry Month and the largest open mic in San Francisco, held every April at SF City Hall. This year, it's on Thursday 4/27 at 5:30-8pm. The free, all-ages event welcomes the public to put your name in the hat for a chance to read a poem in City Hall. A year-round poet, she can also be seen performing poetry with Nova Jazz at the monthly Word Party, as well as welcoming poets on her radio programs at Mutiny Radio every Friday in the Mission District.

(Reading with Valerie at the Poems Under the Dome event will be Nashira Talley '18.)


"Fabric of Society"




What can you carry

across the sea?

Grandmother's recipes

stuffed into your basket

A little cash

stuffed into your bra

A packet of favorite heirloom seeds

and dreams of the soil

that it may feed


to leave

with a head full of curls

and the need to breathe


from the noxious gasses

from the warring factions

from the abject poverty

from the small minds

of kings & priests & families

What would you do?

What would you take with you

if you were forced to leave

with only your bravery?

Would you

like our Syrian sister

from Aleppo

fashion a dress

to remember all that you know

features of an ancient city

now bombed

its people and landmarks


but she wears

her home on her sleeve

and in her pleats


for sanctuary

for hands to hold

the door open

for warmth in the cold

so that she may live to be

the bold, beautiful, brilliant


inside us all

- Valerie Ibarra, 2017

Here's is Valerie's schedule this week:

  • 4/19 Featured poet at Sacred Grounds Cafe 7-9pm
  • 4/22 MC for Earth Day SF @ Civic Center
  • 4/27 Hosting Poems Under the Dome

St. Ignatius College Preparatory

Courage to Lead; Passion to Serve

2001 37th Avenue San Francisco, CA 94116
(415) 731-7500
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