GARDENA — A book launch for Genie Nakano’s “Wings on a Silk Veil” will be held on Saturday, April 29, from 2 to 5 p.m. at the Nisei Veterans Memorial Hall, Gardena Valley Japanese Cultural Institute, 1964 W. 162nd St. in Gardena.

The event will feature a theatrical performance of Nakano’s poetry, accompanied by other female poets and jazz musicians.

Nakano is a performer, award-winning photographer, life-long dancer, yoga and meditation instructor, with a Masters in Dance from UCLA.

“In 2008, I had a left hip-replacement and a right hip replacement in 2018 — and had to find new ways to dance,” she said. “Poetry became my passion. The five-lined poetry of tanka (which originated in Japan 1,600 years ago), stream of consciousness and free-verse style are my preferred modes of writing – tanka gives form to my work, and stream of consciousness sets me free. I have three books of poetry on – ‘Enter the Stream’ (haibun), ‘Storyteller’ (tanka) and a tanka/coloring book, ‘Colorful Lives’ …

“During COVID lockdown, 2020, I became very involved with spoken-word performance poetry on Zoom. Zoom allows poets to meet other poets from around the world. Hence, I was introduced to many different forms. I began experimenting and writing longer forms of poetry. I wrote several plays, short stories, free verse and spoken word. I was dancing again. I believe the true power of poetry is when it is spoken.”

Visit the author’s website at

“As a dancer floats effortlessly, so Genie Nakano’s words flit, soar, hover, and waft above and around the page, with the reader comfortably astride. From childhood memories through womanhood to musings about age, these tanka distill experiences and emotions into a nexus that resonates its full intensity. And just as purple morning glories ‘know all my secrets,’ so do we — and often as not, those secrets are ours as well.

“Photos of Nakano, rendered ethereal by kris moon kondo’s treatment, illuminate this collection: we see her own Wings on a Silk Veil as she floats in dance, her story intimately ‘poemed.’ Song, small song, Japanese song, tanka — ‘one day / I’ll wake up singing / darkness into light’ — and well she has. Nakano brings her world, our known world, both cultural and experiential, into the light of these poems. Yes, ‘right on, write on!’” — Maxianne Berger, author of “Un renard roux/A Red Fox” and “Winnows”

Refreshments will be provided by Gardena Bowl Coffee Shop.

Free but donations are appreciated. For more information, call (310) 324-6611 or email Stephanie Mayeda at To RSVP, visit

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