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Unapologetically Excellent: Vita E. and Kayla Weeden

  • Women & Children First Bookstore 5233 North Clark Street Chicago, IL, 60640 United States (map)

"Vita E. (she/they), a Black trans poet and percussionist from Cleveland, OH, writes and performs poetry with an emphasis on activism as "disruptive narrative.” Since the age of 14, Vita has felt the need to use art to hopefully inspire positive change. 14 years later, she is currently based in Chicago, and works with the Chicago Black TGNC Collective, and Black Lives Matter Chicago. She is one half of the administrative team for awQward, the first talent agency to exclusively uplift the work of Trans and Queer Artists of Color. This team also performs and organizes as #BlackTransMagick, which includes poet and awQward founder, J Mase III. She has recently joined the Chicago Latinx punk band, Cabrona, as the drummer and percussionist. Upon meeting Kayla and witnessing her poetry, Vita says it immediately sparked a desire for collaboration, and she’s incredibly excited to share this #BlackGirlMagick moment with Kayla, who is "a beast in the game before the Bachelor’s Degree.” 

Kayla Weeden, 20, is a passionate, goofy, and lovable queer poet in her junior year at DePaul University. Her love of poetry was kickstarted in 8th grade in her home state of Vermont when her English teacher assigned a poetry project to her class. Since then, she has become the president of DePaul's Presenters of Enlightenment Through Spoken-word club along with being the president of Spectrum DePaul, a 15 year old club dedicated to providing queer students at DePaul a safe and fun place to make friends that grow into family. Kayla and Vita's paths had been crossing for about 2 years before they finally converged, and Kayla is more than excited to be able to share her work alongside Vita, a consistent source of inspiration."