Ep. 138 Kathy Jetñil-Kijiner

Image credit: From a 2018 transformation with MUA, fabricator, photographer, and editor Jocelyn Kapumealani Ng

Our dreams are coming true! This episode features new poetry from the amazing Kathy Jetñil-Kijiner, who joined us from the Marshalls via Zoom to record this show. Enjoy!


Kathy Jetñil-Kijiner is a Marshall Islander poet, performance artist, educator. She received international acclaim through her poetry performance at the opening of the United Nations Climate Summit in New York in 2014. Her writing and performances have been featured by CNN, Democracy Now, the Huffington Post, NBC News, National Geographic, and more. In February 2017, the University of Arizona Press published her first collection of poetry, Iep Jāltok: Poems from a Marshallese Daughter.

Kathy also co-founded the youth environmentalist non-profit Jo-Jikum, dedicated to empowering Marshallese youth to seek solutions to climate change and other environmental impacts threatening their home island. Kathy has been selected as one of 13 Climate Warriors by Vogue in 2015 and the Impact Hero of the Year by Earth Company in 2016. She received her Master’s in Pacific Island Studies from the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa. She is currently a PhD Candidate at the School of Culture, History, and Language in Australian National University.


  1. LIT: “To the Organizers of this Church Conference,” written originally for the Vatican on a climate change conference and then developed for the Inundation: Art and Climate Change in the Pacific exhibition in Honolulu with visual artist Joy Lehuanani Enomoto
  2. LIT: “Seawall Soliloquy #2,” “Seawall Soliloquy #14,” and “Seawall Soliloquy #7”; this series is featured in Kathy’s second book manuscript-in-progress
  3. Fousheé’s “Single AF”
  4. SZA’s “Good Days”
  5. Mahalia’s “BRB” (feat. Pink Sweat$)
  6. 8RO8’s “Pilau” (feat. YOREN!)


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