The Harlem Literary Event, A Fireworks Booth, and Confidence
For a couple of weeks during the summer of my 17th year, I worked at a fireworks booth with proceeds going towards the non-profit theater group I belonged to – it was deaf theater and we communicated using American Sign Language, so none of us spoke while on stage.
For a couple of hours, and only on one day, the mother of a fellow theater group member sat with me in the booth. She was a speech therapist. That day she told me, after listening to me talk, I would never be successful in life if I didn’t improve my speech. Money was tight and therapy is expensive, so I didn’t go to therapy as a teenager or as a young adult. The bad thing is I listened to her, and I believed her – and I have been carrying her words with me ever since.
Fast forward several years later - to now – due to a second dental surgery in February and a couple of other unexpected dental complications, I only was able to attend 2 sessions with my speech therapist recently, instead of the 9 visits that were planned. I’ve learned speech therapy is a process – it is hard and serious work, and results don’t happen overnight.
So, along with my overnight bag and my poems, I am bringing with me my speech impediment to the readings later this month at the Harlem Arts Center (Council). But, different than before, the words of the therapist in the fireworks booth now sound to me like a whisper. She said that I wouldn’t and I’m here to tell her that I’m going to. The show will go on, as planned.
I hope you’ll be able to join us – in-person or as part of the virtual global audience for the live feed. Reminders (links) will be available a week before the performance. And, as always, I am thrilled you’re a part of this. It really does mean the world to me.
March 26th – Jimmy Broccoli - Live from the Harlem Arts Center (Council):
[First time listed is Eastern Standard Time (New York/Atlanta), the second time listed is for the United Kingdom and surrounding countries]
11:00 am/4:00 pm
12:00 pm/5:00 pm
1:00 pm/6:00 pm
I will see you then!