The tradition of this festival is to bring verses and poetry to unusual spaces. This year, in the wake of the health crisis, they have decided to hand out verses "in band-aids" to those who get vaccinated against COVID-19, in addition to sending tailor-made poems to people who have lost family members during the pandemic.
The event strives to get poetry into unlikely places, and this year through April 30, Miami residents can find poems in unexpected places: school rooftops, bus stops, on gumball machines and even on band-aids for those recently vaccinated against COVID. In addition, they will have online readings and creative workshops at their fingertips.
"We always choose uplifting poems, in English and Spanish," said Melody Santiago, director of development and communications for "O, Miami," in an interview with EFE.
Santiago, an artist of Puerto Rican and Cuban descent, was astonished because "in Miami I couldn't find information on the 6,000 people who have died from COVID. Who are they, where did they live?" she wondered in anguish.
Currently, the promoter is working with 18 poets in the city, both in Spanish and English, to send poems to the relatives of the deceased who have requested them, although she says that demand has outstripped supply.
"A Band-Aid fits only one line," Santiago says of the unusual method they are bringing to Miami's Jackson Hospitals, with verses such as "con luz" by Peruvian César Vallejo or "Live Again Begins" by American William Carlos Williams.
O, Miami"produces an average of 41 events and 23 projects each year.
"We look at the map of Miami and see where we are not doing poetry. We visit every zip code, sometimes with poetry as public art and others are planned events," Santiago explains.