Author Archive

Dreams and Death in Karisma Price’s I’m Always So Serious

Price’s poems often play with dreams, with alternate realities. Price writes about these dreams, these alternate realities, by using metaphor, by making lists, in which one person, one object, one thought, lives different realities. Love poems here have the names of the dead. Poems repeatedly turn serious.

Juan Felipe Herrera’s Poetry for the People

Many of Juan Felipe Herrera’s poems are dedicated to those who have died tragically, victims of violence. Herrera has made the choice to try to engage with these acts of violence, and to act with love for the lives lost.

Cooking as an Heirloom in Memorial

Early on in Washington’s new novel, Benson asks his partner’s mother for a story about her son. She says that stories are heirlooms, explaining that they are “a personal thing…You don’t ask for heirlooms. They’re just given to you.” She tells Benson this while she is cooking. But by

Matters of the Sea / Cosas del mar and the Gulf between Homes

“Every time I go to Cuba, I spend the first moments after I’m settled walking over to El Malecon and sitting by the sea.”

Hurricanes and Home-Building in If I Survive You

Jonathan Escoffery’s debut novel shows us how the people of Miami try to survive both the day-to-day obstacles and the hurricanes that threaten to destroy their houses, their jobs, their city, before they can even turn it into the home they want.

Punch Me Up to the Gods’ Letter to the Past, Present, and Future

Brian Broome’s 2021 memoir is a letter to Black boys and Black men who have been “molded, not with fingers but with punches.”

Boomerang / Bumerán’s Exploration of the Importance of Writing

Immediately after opening Achy Obejas’ 2021 collection we see how she undertakes the mission of writing words that could still save her, us, our world.

Writing Death

“I never got the privilege to grow old with, or even get a chance to say a proper goodbye to, Pompilio or HS, and they never got to see some of the beautiful things I’ve somehow managed to. But writing about death lets me take my ghosts with me.”

The Pleas of Green: Sighs of Our Ailing Planet

Niyi Osundare’s newest collection of poetry lets the earth speak. He shows us how the planet is ailing via the direct address and the personification of the environment, forcing us to consider how we might help protect Earth from those who are killing it.

Ariel Francisco’s Poetry as Documentation

Governments may want people to provide documentation proving that they are, in fact, people, but poets provide documentation for the people. It is the poet’s job to document the moments that would otherwise be lost—to document moments for the people.