I wanted to read you a poem I have been working on for the past week.What will you tell them when they ask you what it's like?It is Racing to slam my Citi bike into the last open dock in front of the UC, sweating, heavy backpack, hair dye turning all my hats blue, The light blinks green, thank you God! Elevator up, 5th floor, pretending I am not late when I see MG in the hallway.It is somehow always trying to catch up, even though it seems that I have been working every hour of every day for months now. It is late nights, and it is heavy bags, and It is struggling, and it is struggling and I am struggling to find unity. and It is fighting the man. The societal man that lives inside my head that is telling me and everyone I know that we are not good enough and not enough people care. And everytime it is a fight well fought, and well lost by me to the man, because it is true. And I am inventing and designing ways to keep going while knowing that it is true. Red fades to blue, black sky, endless stars, sleeping on the beach, you can watch the world turn from here, you can see the star train.In my head I am on the shore of Lake Michigan and I am watching the sun set, patiently. Patiently. Not taking it for granted. The projects in my head are not yelling back at me, they are waiting quietly, and I have all the time in the world, and it all gets done. But in my body I am sitting there in class, taking apart the seam I just did. I am yelling out to my class at how wonderful life is, and how lucky we are to be here. And now for the 15th time I am rethreading the coverstitch machine, and yelling out to my class about how horrible this machine is, and how lucky we are to be here. I am working on 1/10th of a table because there are suitcases and starbucks cups and enormous tulle dresses surrounding me. And I am looking around me, and I am trying not to take it for granted, and I am always taking it for granted. It is remembering being a senior In highschool and almost getting expelled for not wearing a bra under my polo. It is remembering the pain, the stomach churning sickness that was others trying to control my bodily autonomy, and it is realizing I haven't worn a bra in 4 years. And it is realizing the control people in your home town had over you is laughably insignificant now. And then it is remembering that there are girls and children around the world facing what you faced again and again still. It is waiting for someone to give you permission to use they/them pronouns, and finally when you are sick of waiting just using them without permission. It is realizing you never needed permission. It is deconstructing the systems that we are tied up in, it is standing in opposition to them.It is thinking, no. It is crying about the fact that we are stepping into an ancient trade, a craft that extends to the beginning of humanity, one that directly responds to what people believe in, who we think we are, and who we dream of becoming. It is the painful and lonely and beautiful cottage industry. One that was held up by mothers, and daughters and now us. And I am standing here, realizing that I am just a kid who has now been given the key to alter the future of what clothing can be. And what will you do with it? It is trying to believe that I am enough, it is trying to forgive myself and it is trying to love myself. and it is trying to love you. It is being grateful to work with my hands and my heart, and it exists as this person I could never have dreamed of becoming before walking in here. And It is being grateful to know you, to be seen by you. And it is wondering how to make the most self-serving, elitist, consuming industry something that can uplift others. And it is wondering how we step into a world that we believe in. And it is working to make a world that we believe in. It is remembering what Ursula K. Le Guin wrote, “You cannot buy the revolution, you cannot make the revolution, you can only be the revolution. It is in your spirit or it is nowhere.” It is understanding that we are on land that was stolen from the native people who lived here. The Lenape people. And it is knowing that they are still here, Indigenous people are still living, their cultures and languages and knowledge are alive and well. And It is knowing the solutions we need are ones we already have. The solutions are in indigenous communities. It is looking to them for answers. It is believing that an indigenous future is a future for everyone. “Am I trying to tell you that forgiveness is the key to the divine? Yes.” And I am remembering that I am just a monkey that bent my thumbs and lit a fire and learned how to sew from a youtube video, and that I am good enough, and that I care. That is what I will tell them. thank you parsons school of fashion, class of 2023, and congratulations, welcome to the unknown.


 Hey, I love you. Do you want to be a solarpunk freak? First, you have to care, second, you have to not give up hope, third, you have to have radical optimism for the future. Fourth, you have to work to make a difference. Fifth, you have to have a lot of fun. Are you ready? Let's do it! Oh, also-






©isaboko 2023

Isaboko pieces are
made from waste materials,
zero waste patterns,
and designed for gender free wear.

These are core ideas in radically sustainable DESIGN and if replicated
have the power to transform the future of fashion and the world.

Making Solarpunk Clothes for Radically Optimistic Future Freaks.   Making Solarpunk Clothes for Radically Optimistic Future Freaks.