Mississippi – Yangtze Sister Rivers (Wang Ping, Kinship of Rivers)

Wang Ping

Wang Ping

Kinship of Rivers is an international project engaging art, poetry, stories, music, dance and food to connect people and communities along the Mississippi and Yangtze Rivers. Founded in 2011 by Wang Ping, we caught up with her on December 26, 2012, via Skype to discuss the project, how it was inspired, in part, by Allen Ginsberg, her experience in taking students paddling on the Mississippi River and how she believes rivers deserve human rights. Part 1 (11:40)

In part two of our interview with Wang Ping, she elaborated on her affinity for indigenous peoples because of the reverence they have for the natural world, coordinating tobacco ceremonies with indigenous students at the Mississippi River, the process of making the river flags, paddling at several of the Mississippi’s confluences with other major rivers, visiting New Orleans and seeing the wake of the BP oil spill. Part 2 (12:00)

In part three of our interview, Wang Ping discussed how she got the idea of creating river flags, based on Tibetan prayer flags, her experience of the Yagntze River growing up in Shanghai, her feelings about the different cultures in the Upper Mississippi and Lower Mississippi River Valley areas, her feelings about some U.S. political rhetoric about China, an experience she had at the huge Three Gorges Dam project in China and the power of water. Part 3 (22:00)

A pdf with information on the project.

About Splabman

Paul Nelson is founder of SPLAB (Seattle Poetics LAB) in Seattle, the Cascadia Poetry Festival and the August POetry POstcard Fest (PoPo). www.POPO.cards. He has published a collection of essays, Organic Poetry & a serial poem re-enacting the history of Auburn, WA, A Time Before Slaughter (shortlisted for a 2010 Genius Award by The Stranger) and American Sentences, a book of 17 syllable poems drawn from the first fourteen of his 20 years of daily practice. The tenth anniversary edition of that book includes Pig War: & Other Songs of Cascadia. He’s interviewed Allen Ginsberg, Michael McClure, Wanda Coleman, Anne Waldman, Sam Hamill, Robin Blaser, Nate Mackey, Eileen Myles, George Bowering, Diane di Prima, Brenda Hillman, George Stanley, Joanne Kyger & many Cascadia poets (see: https://paulenelson.com/americanprophets/) has presented his poetry and poetics in London, Brussels, Bothell, Cumberland, BC, Qinghai and Beijing, China, Lake Forest, Illinois, Ukiah, CA, and other places & writes an American Sentence every day. www.PaulENelson.com
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