Openly gay poet Richard Blanco read a
poem at the reopenning of the U.S. Embassy in Cuba.
The 47-year-old Blanco was born to a
Cuban exile family. He also read at President Barack Obama's second
On Friday, he read his new work,
Matters of the Sea (Cosas del Mar), at the ceremony marking
the formal reopening of the embassy.
Dressed in a white guayabera and
standing near the Cuban coast, Blanco dedicated his poem to the
“people of both our countries who believed that not even the sea
can keep us from one another.”
“The sea doesn't matter,” he
started. “What matters is this: We all belong to the sea between
After images of shared experiences
connected to the sea, the poem ends: “Today, the sea still telling
us the end to all our doubts and fears is to gaze into the lucid
blues of our shared horizon, to breathe together, to heal together.”
(The video is embedded on this page. Visit
our video library for more videos.)
Blanco told The
Miami Herald that the sea serves as both “the invisible
Berlin Wall” between the two countries and a powerful connection
between the people.