Have a Very Hialeah (Haikus) Christmas

A partridge in a pair tree? Please. In Miami, the gift you are likely to receive on the first day of Christmas is a Willy Chirino CD. Or so say the geniuses behind Hialeah Haikus, the Foryoucansee Collective, in their own Miami-fied version of the Christmas classic, The 12 Days of Miami Christmas.

The group of young artists, actors and writers will come together again this Saturday to add a little Hialeah sazon to our holidays at “A Very Hialeah (Haikus) Christmas.” Attendees can enjoy the 12 Days of Miami Christmas (video above), The Night Before Cuban Christmas, a litany of Christmas-themed haiku and hopefully a little pan con lechon and Bacardi.

Hialeah Haikus started as a text exchange between friends and Miami natives Alex Fumero and Marco Ramirez several years ago and snowballed as the duo enlisted other friends and writers to come up with their own poems. “Most of the best haikus came from the people we brought in,” say Fumero, whose mother Aida Levitan owns Editorial UltraMar, a small publishing non-profit that promotes Spanish language poetry. He and Ramirez convinced his mother that it would be a fun idea to publish the collection of haiku about Miami. Hialeah Haikus printed its first (and only) book at the end of 2009, selling around 5,000 copies of the collection of Japanese-style poems that, in 17 syllables provide an insight into Miami culture that even Broward residents may not get. Want an example?

ITT said no.
Cordon Bleu said no (for now).
Gonna be a cop.

The group has done readings at the 2011 Book Fair and Books & Books, but Fumero insists it’s just a fun side project for all involved. “This is something that is very Miami, we have no intent of broadening it. These jokes are very specific. It’s about being from this town that thinks it’s a big city,” says Fumero, who now lives in Los Angeles. People who are not entertained by the poems just don’t get it, he insists. “They imagine a room full of people from Chicago writing this book to slander Miami. We don’t feel like we are making fun of Miami. This to us is like a Christopher Guest movie – it’s funny because it’s so true.”