An Old Blue Light by Terra Oliveira
Written while in travel and in transition, An Old Blue Light evokes the feeling of roads, trains, new environments, and new sensations in a dialogue between the inner and outer world. Oliveira's work is often existential, sometimes questioning, sometimes resolving, but always with feeling. Threads of old grief and contented detachment accompany honest illustrations and prose, weaving together a collection on the border between the ascetic contemplations of a mystic and the vulnerable confessions of a person who dreams and loves.
"Terra Oliveira has always been able to bring the achingly human and the cosmic together, their poetry being the meeting point. This book feels like a triumph over loss. It feels like a discovery within oneself. Both ethereal and grounding at the same time. I feel as if I am experiencing their personal journey with them. They do not fail to inspire."
— Emery Allen, author of Become. and Soft Human
Terra Oliveira is a Philadelphia-based writer, the founder and editor of Recenter Press, and an organizer with the Philadelphia Liberation Center. They are the author of poetry and visual art books And Still To Sleep (2018), An Old Blue Light (2017), and Processes: A Meditation (2017), and their work has been published in Hooligan Magazine, Prolit Magazine, and more. In April 2016, Oliveira participated in the Hope Villa Artist Residency in the Western Ghats of India, and they were the Artist-In-Residence at The Schoolhouse at Mutianyu at The Great Wall of China in March of 2017. Born and raised in the Bay Area, they received their B.A. in documentary film production from San Francisco State University in May 2014, where their work received the Student Film Award at the San Francisco International Asian American Film Festival (CAAMFest) in Spring 2014.
In the years since completing their degree, Oliveira has co-facilitated nonviolent communication workshops, worked as an after school program facilitator at the Free Library of Philadelphia, and also had numerous stays and live / work exchanges at monasteries, meditation centers, ashrams, eco-villages, summer camps, farms, and intentional communities in California, Massachusetts, Pennsylvania, Delaware, China, India, and Nepal. As a dedicated student and practitioner of numerous creative, spiritual, and revolutionary disciplines, these intensive retreats combined with serious study and political practice are in direct relationship with Oliveira’s work. You can keep up with them on Instagram @terraoliveira_.
Collection of poetry and illustrations. Author photo by Nicholas Sese. 66 pages. Black & White. Published by Recenter Press in September 2017.