Author and playwright Portia Love knows about being an underdog. One of her most powerful works is also one of her most personal.

Through any hardships, Portia Love has taken to pencil and paper to express her thoughts and experiences — and that’s exactly what she did after facing homelessness in 2018. She reworked her story, “A Day in the Life,” and turned it into a play depicting the stereotypes and typecasts associated with homeless people. Though the story was written a decade before living at the local shelter, time spent there allowed Portia to hear personal stories of struggles within the homeless population, which led to a more authentic play. “A Day in the Life” ran three sold-out performances at Benson’s B-Side Theatre in 2019. Portia believes all of us have a story. Press play for an intriguing glimpse into hers.

About the speaker

In addition to her play, “A Day in the Life,” Portia Love has written multiple books, including “Your Bridge to History,” an African American History Tour, which is currently being used as part of the history curriculum for Omaha Public Schools. Her poetry books “Redefinition” and “Eclipses of the Sun,” have been placed in the Metropolitan Community College libraries. Her most recent self-published book is “That’s All I Have to Say.”

Portia was chosen as one of the members of the first group of four Carver Bank residents through Bemis Foundation for the Arts. She has taught writing and poetry workshops to children, teens and adults for Bemis, Carver Bank, WhyArts? and Girls, Inc.

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A lot of people came and said I never thought about it like this. I never thought about the fact that this person that I’m seeing that is standing out here panhandling or that’s in the shelters or that’s hanging out and sleeping under the bridges has a story and that there were life circumstances and a part of their story that brought them to this place. I think it’s very important that we recognize that and that we realize they need our help not our condemnation. — Portia Love

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