26. Yaddyra Peralta

Categories: 100 Creatives
In honor of our Artopia party on February 10, Cultist proudly presents "100 Creatives," where we feature Miami's cultural superheroes in random order. Have suggestions for future profiles? Email cultist@miaminewtimes.com with the whos and whys.

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Photo by Lucrecia Peralta
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26. Yaddyra Peralta
"My ambition is for my poetry and fiction to exude the sweet muck of southwest Miami-Dade," says Yaddyra Peralta,a student in FIU's Creative Writing MFA program and a seriously busy poet. This month alone, she has worked at the Palm Beach Poetry Festival with Heather McHugh (2009 winner of the MacArthur Genius Award) and represented the Miami Poetry Collective (MPC), of which she is a founding member, at the 2011 Sundance Film Festival.

Peralta was born in Tegucigalpa, Honduras and raised in Hialeah. This background plays a central role in her work. She says her verse is inspired by Mesoamerican and South Florida native creation mythology as well as  Miami's landscape. She traces her influences to the Surrealists as well as poets James Tate, Russell Edson, and Dean Young. Peralta explains: "Its consciousness is informed by the unshakable but whimsical sense of immigrant displacement."

On a lighter note, Peralta is involved with MPC's "Poem Depot," a poetry-on-demand, pop-up shop that has become a regular feature of Wynwood's Second Saturday Art Walk and has also made appearances at the Miami Art Museum, public libraries, and Books & Books. She has been a guest on WLRN's Under the Sun, and her work has been used by The Miami Art Museum and Wynwood's ArtLab33. 

1. List five things that inspire you.
 
- Yoko Ono
- Scott Walker
- Mesoamerican myths and culture 
- My fellow Miami Poetry Collective poets. They are a brilliant bunch
- Gladys Peralta (my Mom)


2. What was your last big project?

A Poem Depot with David Svenson of the Miami Poetry Collective at the 2011 Sundance Film Festival. The Greater Convention & Visitor's Bureau invited us to write poems at their "Miami Express Yourself" lounge, which is promoting the city of Miami at the festival. They wanted someone to represent the creative community in Miami, and I am utterly delighted that they chose poets. It's exciting to know that we were putting poetry in the hands of people who would not come into contact with it otherwise. It also hit me, on our first day there, that the work we were putting out was being disseminated to our broadest audience ever. People come from all over to go to Sundance. So, I'm picturing MPC poems in frames, as gifts, as bookmarks and travel flotsam at the bottom of suitcases in LA, Manhattan, Sao Paolo. Material with it's own life to be cherished or lost and maybe found again.   

3. What's your next big project?

Graduating with my MFA at Florida International University. It's taken a while. I am also a fiction writer and am looking for the right way to incorporate both poetry and fiction in novel form. And Miami Squares. It's Peter Borrebach's brainchild. It's like a choose-your-own-adventure reading. Six poets, two poems each. The audience chooses the order and who reads what.

4. Why do you do what you do?

I couldn't survive otherwise. I have no other skills. And poetry legitimizes my compulsive daydreaming.

5. What's something you want Miami to know about you?

I have a love-hate relationship with you Miami, and right now I am in deep-deep, gross, can't-keep-my-hands-off-you-love.

What's something you don't want Miami to know about you?
Yes, I am from Hialeah. There, I said it. And I find you romantic, too, ciudad de factorias...


The Creatives so far:

27. Barron Sherer
28. Brigid Baker
29. Daniel Fila
30. McLaine Oberhellmann
31. Fro Rojas
32. Annie Hollingsworth
33. Preston Allen
34. Cristina Molina
35. David Josef Tamargo
36. Jillian Mayer

37. Alfonso Vega
38. Natasha Lopez de Victoria
39. Aholsniffsglue

40. Heather Maloney
41. Jorge Rubiera
42. Elaine Lancaster
43. Nick Duckart
44. Danielle Estefan
45. John Dufresne
46. Monica Lopez de Victoria
47. Bill Bilowit
48. Alette Simmons-Jimenez
49. Tawnie Silva
50. Ginger Bardot
51. Jonathan David Kane
52. Naomi Fisher
53. Rocky Grimes
54. Teresa Barcelo
55. Paul Tei
56. Lee Materazzi
 
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