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Storied: San Francisco

Jun 16, 2020

Poet, activist, and scholar Thea Matthews grew up in the Excelsior, which to this day is still a largely ungentrified, working-class neighborhood in San Francisco.

In this podcast, Thea talks about growing up as a Black/Mexican/Indigenous kid with a single mom in San Francisco in the 1990s. Most of her childhood experiences with her Blackness were negative, but they later formed a backdrop to her embracing that aspect of her life. Her views of the city, in all its complexity, inspire a lot of her poetry to this day.

Toward the middle of the podcast, Thea reads her poem "St. Francis." She ends the episode talking about embracing her Blackness and drawing strength from it.

Please visit Thea's website to learn more.

Join us tomorrow for Part 2.

We recorded this podcast during quarantine in San Francisco in June 2020.

Photography by Michelle Kilfeather