Recommended reading

Updates!!!

Gosh! It’s been a while since I’ve posted on here. Lots has happened. I’ll just cover the major thingies and then some of the latest thingies.

Major

My craft chapbook, You MUST Use the Word Smoothie, is available for FREE download from Sundress Publications.

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I won a Pushcart Prize for my poem “four short essays personifying a future in which white supremacy has ended,” originally published by Foglifter (many thanks to the editors for nominating me!).

Latest

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Bouquets of thanks to the DC Youth Slam Team for highlighting my poem, “Set the Garden on Fire” on their Twitter page, in honor of Immigrant Heritage Month. The poem’s the title poem from my first chapbook and was first published in Split This Rock’s Poem of the Week—archived here. And here’s the cool graphic (with an excerpt from the poem) that the DC Youth Slam Team posted.

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It is also, of course (!), Pride Month (!!!). Thanks to Sarah Neilson for including my book in “Reading the Rainbow: A Pride Reading List” over at LA Review of Books. Such a beautiful list! And I love this description for my collection. “A total thrill”~!

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This week (June 12th) marked the third anniversary of the Pulse nightclub shooting in Orlando, Florida. 49 people, many of them queer and Latinx, were killed in what was, at the time, the largest modern massacre in the United States. It was Latin night. People were dancing, laughing, sharing stories and themselves.

Here is an elegy I wrote in response to Pulse. This poem thinks about, among other things, queer desire and joy next to the constant threat of violence. I am immensely grateful to Julian Randall for publishing this last year as part of a “Lineage of Mirrors” feature on Winter Tangerine.

Love Poems

I love love poems—reading them, writing them (or trying to). I love the falling in love with language that happens with every poem (or so I hope for). I love the bold effort, the tender effort to say, to sing, and to listen more precisely and strangely. I love love poems for partners, friends, plants, waters, family, your own breath.

Grateful to the following places for sharing some of my love poems on Thursday, for Valentine’s Day (a silly, commercial holiday, but maybe at its best a reminder of something sweet; including the literal discount chocolate the next day!):

Kundiman (which itself refers to a genre of Filipino love song)—”First Light,” which was published in Cutthroat: A Journal of the Arts and then in my first book and also in Poem-a-Day.

Poetry Magazine on Twitter— “Winter,” which appeared in the Asian American poets issue.

Poets.org on Instagram—”The School of Night & Hyphens,” which was published in Poem-a-Day.

Poems of Gladness

Thanks to Catherine Pierce for the shout-out (to my Twitter!—a recent thread on happy poems) in this candid, moving piece, “On Mary Oliver and Resisting Poems of Gladness,” over on The Millions.

I, too, have been reflecting on my past reluctance to openly celebrate Oliver’s work, to recommend her poems to students, or especially to colleagues. I regret not speaking more often about what Oliver’s work means to me, while she was still alive. I’m determined, now, not to shy away from my enthusiasm, her gorgeous contribution.

Read Pierce’s entire essay here.

How to Read Harder in 2019

Thanks to librarian Gwen Glazer for including my book in "How to Read Harder in 2019," a recommended reading list for the New York Public Library. Great to be on here alongside poetry books by Nicole Sealey, (BOA pressmate!) Marcelo Hernandez Castillo, and Tracy K. Smith.

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Check out all the recommended books, across twenty-four categories!

Glass Poetry - Recommended Reading 2018

Slightly belated but still super enthused thanks to Anthony Frame, Editor of Glass Poetry, for including my poem “I Invite My Parents to a Dinner Party” (originally published in the Poem-a-Day series) in his 2018 year’s end list of recommended reading.

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What a blessing to find my work here, alongside stunning poems by Gabrielle Calvocoressi, Kristin Chang, Yujane Chen, Cassandra de Alba, Logan February, Roy Guzmán, Luther Hughes, Sara Eliza Johnson, Rachel McKibbins, H. Melt, Noor Ibn Najam, Julian Randall, Leah Silvieus, Erin Elizabeth Smith, Shelley Wong, and others.

Check out the entire list here.