Join mothertongue @ the Black Cat for a post pride-weekend spokenword performance plus open mic at 8:30 PM on June 14, featuring Arden Eli Hill and youth from the Sexual Minority Youth Assistance League (SMYAL).  This youth-friendly, all ages event is free and open to the public.  A suggested donation of $10 will be collected to benefit SMYAL—the Washington, DC metro area service organization solely dedicated to supporting lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and questioning (LGBTQ) youth. 

Founded in 1984, SMYAL is a 501 (c) (3) nonprofit organization.  SMYAL’s mission is to promote and support self-confident, healthy, productive lives for LGBTQ youth ages 13-21 as they journey from adolescence into adulthood.  For more information about SMYAL visit

Since its inception, mothertongue has been an inclusive community, welcoming trans and gender variant people who feel a sense of solidarity with mothertongue’s mission. mothertongue is honored to feature celebrated poet and writer Arden Eli Hill alongside the crucial voices of SMYAL youth.  For more information about mothertongue, visit or join the “mothertongue dc” Facebook group.  

Arden Eli Hill is an all-around queer with a MFA in creative writing from Hollins University. Ze is currently a poetry editor for Breath and Shadow, an online journal of disability culture and literature. In 2008, ze was a poetry fellow at the Lambda Literary Retreat for Emerging Writers. Arden’s essays have appeared in Transgender Tapestry, The 2008 Inglis House Poetry Chapbook, The Lambda Literary award winning anthology First Person Queer and its sequel, Second Person Queer. Hir first published short story will appear in the upcoming anthology Women’s Work from Girlchild press (ran by longtime mothertongue volunteer and host, Michelle Sewell).

Interested in signing up on the open mic!?  Email Danielle at