Blossom Johnson

Blossom Johnson

Diné

About

My name is Blossom Johnson, and I am a Diné playwright. I was raised by my grandmother on the very top of Dził Yijin (Black Mesa), AZ and I've always been surrounded by stories. When I open the front door of my grandma’s yellow house, I can see a coal mine. Below the mesa is an old run-down restaurant where my mother used to hustle as a waitress during the summer in her teen years, and there is an old store where my grandmother would up-sale her hand made jewelry to tourists by the entrance, but the restaurant and the store has now been closed for years because what was taken from the earth was diminished, so no one stayed, and they eventually went out of business. The people that stayed are Diné and their stories, my stories, are thriving. When I write a play, I write for my people and the plays I write come from memory, experience and family history. Throughout the process of writing my first play, Red Running Into Water, I had not realized how much Diné philosophy and teachings were woven into the play until there was a workshop of the play with Diné actors with New Native Theatre. RRIW was written because I wanted to understand memory and trauma on the mind and body of a Diné woman in relation to the desecration of indigenous lands. In my writing, I reveal truths that are hard to face but I balance the darkness with humor, so the audience has a chance to breathe and laugh when they witness the family's truth on stage.

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