ILS faculty and an affiliated student partook in a local poetry reading as part of efforts to raise money for immigrants in need. It was one of dozens of readings taking place in 45 cities across the United States Wednesday.
Francisco Aragón, a faculty member at Notre Dame’s Institute for Latino Studies, organized the local Writers for Migrant Justice event. Misael Osorio-Conde, an MFA student at Notre Dame, read his poem “Detention Center.” The money will go to a nonprofit called Immigrant Families Together, which provides legal representation, medical services, housing, food, and clothing to immigrants in need.
Aragón told local NPR affiliate WVPE that he organized the event in order to represent South Bend's Latino community.
“I think that if we are really honest with ourselves, we would agree that the immigrant history of our country is one that’s worth being aware of and supporting,” he said.
At the reading, poets talked about their parents journey to the United States, the U.S. border, and their own experiences as migrants. Osorio-Condo said poetry is the perfect catalyst to start difficult conversations about things like the country’s immigration system.
“Poetry has the ability to reach people in ways that another medium will not. It’s more spiritual in a way,” he told WVPE.
A total of 20 poets participated in Wednesday night's event.