Andrea Gibson

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Andrea Gibson (born August 13, 1975) is an award-winning poet and activist who lives in Boulder, Colorado. Gibson's poetry focuses on gender norms, politics, social reform and the struggles LGBTQ people face in today's society.

Personal life[edit]

Gibson grew up in Calais, Maine. They are the child of Mark and Shirley Gibson, and have one sister, Laura, who is mentioned in their poem 'Titanic'. They grew up in a Baptist home and attended Saint Joseph's College of Maine. Later, they moved to New Orleans with their girlfriend. In 1999, the two moved to Boulder, Colorado. They went to their first open-mic in Denver, where Gibson was inspired become a spoken word artist.[1]

Gibson also goes by Andrew. They use gender neutral pronouns, and they have written many poems about gender identity, such as "Swing set" and "Andrew".[2] Gibson has said, regarding their gender, "I don't necessarily identify within a gender binary. I've never in my life really felt like a woman and I've certainly never felt like a man. I look at gender on a spectrum and I feel somewhere on that spectrum that's not landing on either side of that."[3]

Poetry[edit]

A four-time Denver Grand Slam Champion, Gibson finished fourth at the 2004 National Poetry Slam, and they finished third at both the 2006 and 2007 Individual World Poetry Slam.[4][5] In 2008, Gibson became the first poet ever to win the Women of the World Poetry Slam (WOWps) in Detroit.[6]

In 2009, Gibson's published their first syndicated work, Pole Dancing To Gospel Hymns. Gibson has also self-published four books: Trees that Grow in Cemeteries, Yellow Bird, What the Yarn Knows of Sweaters, Pole Dancing to Gospel Hymns," and "Pansy". In 2011, Write Bloody Publishing published Andrea Gibson's 6th book, "The Madness Vase".

Yellowbird, their third album, incorporates music with their spoken word. Gibson professes that they always write to music and so it felt natural to collaborate with a musician. This album was also an effort to write about what they usually fear writing about. This theme is continued through many of the poems in their second most recent album, Flower Boy. Gibson released Truce in 2013.

Gibson cites Sonya Renee, Rachel McKibbens, Derrick Brown, Anis Mojgani, Patricia Smith, and Mary Oliver as influencing their work.[7]

Throughout the year, Gibson tours universities and other venues across the country.

Activism[edit]

In addition to using poetry to provide social and political commentary on gender and LGBTQ issues, they are involved with many activist groups. They often perform at Take Back the Night events, LGBTQ events, pride events, trans events, anti-war rallies, peace rallies, organizations against the occupation of Palestine, and groups focused on examining the wrongs of capitalism, patriarchy and white supremacy.

For twenty years, Gibson performed with Vox Feminista, a "performance tribe of radical feminists bent on social change through cultural revolution." [3]

In 2013, alongside Kelsey Gibb, Gibson launched the website and support system, Stay Here With Me. The tumblr for Stay Here With Me presents it as "an interactive, safe space offering collective support while encouraging individual healing to keep those who visit alive today, and wanting to stay alive until tomorrow." [8]

Discography[edit]

  • Bullets and Windchimes (2003)
  • Swarm (2004)
  • When the Bough Breaks (2006)
  • Yellowbird (2009)
  • Flower Boy (2011)
  • Truce (2013)

Books[edit]

  • Pole Dancing to Gospel Hymns (2006)
  • The Madness Vase (2012)
  • Pansy (2015)

References[edit]

  1. ^ Peiken, Matt. "Andrea Gibson isn't in it to win", Metaphor Magazine, April 30, 2007. Accessed February 10, 2008.
  2. ^ "AMA with Andrea Gibson on reddit" August 10, 2014
  3. ^ a b "The Pioneering Poet". Interview Magazine. Retrieved 2016-03-04. 
  4. ^ International Poetry Slam Final Results. gotpoetry.com. February 5, 2006
  5. ^ Ed Mabrey wins the Individual World Poetry Slam. Gotpoetry.com. February 3, 2007. Retrieved on 2012-05-28.
  6. ^ About the first WOWps slam; Detroit, Michigan, March 13–15 2008. Wow.poetryslam.com. Retrieved on 2012-05-28.
  7. ^ ""I am always in the process of becoming": Andrea Gibson In Conversation With Eyezine | EYEZINE". EYEZINE. Retrieved 2016-03-04. 
  8. ^ "stayherewithme". stayherewithus.tumblr.com. Retrieved 2016-03-05. 

External links[edit]