Personal Parable


Airdate: August 2, 2018

Kali Ferguson is a story teller and cultural educator. She performs original poems, songs and fractured fairy tales in English and Spanish in classrooms, museums, churches, conferences and festivals. Kali shares cultural literacy through the Latin American and African diaspora tradition. She is the owner of CommuniCulture, a cultural education and teaching artist platform, and the founder of the African American Latinx Bridge Building Awareness program. She has served as a consultant, curriculum creator and facilitator with the American Friends Service Committee, a Quaker organization that promotes lasting peace with justice as an expression of faith in action. Kali earned a B.A. in Spanish Education from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro.

In this episode we explore a fractured fairy tale, the wisdom of joy, growing up in a prominent family, and a story of psychiatric illness and health.  


  • Kali describes one of her favorite fractured fairy tales and why the story of Blancaflor: La Negra is meaningful to her.

  • She notes the particular cultural wisdom that she believes is most vital to share.

  • Kali discusses her work as a story coach and cultural educator and explains the difference between a personal parable and a personal brand.

  • She talks about growing up as the daughter of a prominent attorney and what her parents taught her.

  • She on being diagnosed as manic depressive, how perceptions about mental health have affected her life, and her current diagnosis of Schizoaffective.

  • Kali addresses the distinction between mental illness and mental health.

  • She identifies where she thinks of herself on the mental health spectrum.

  • Kali answers what delights her, what she is curious about, what gives her hope, and what she is certain about.

plus Mark's Personal Word Essay: Gifts of Imperfection

To Learn More About Kali


  • What struck you about Kali's comments?

  • What is your favorite story?

  • What is your personal parable?

  • What are you certain about?

We invite your posts on our Facebook page.

This episode is sponsored by Blumenthal Performing Arts, celebrating its 25th year presenting the best in performing arts. 

Further support is provided by Charlotte Mecklenburg Library, one of America’s leading urban public libraries, delivering exceptional services and programs, with a mission to improve lives and build a stronger community. 

And by the Arts & Science Council, Charlotte-Mecklenburg's resource hub and lead advocate for the regional cultural community, providing Culture for All.

Additional support is provided by the UNC College of Arts + Architecture, celebrating a decade of creative education in the arts and design.