Sunday, March 10, 2013

Latino/a Featured Poets

Yaccaira Salvatierra @ The Acentos Review

 The Acentos Review is, I think, one of a handful of journals that is dedicated both to literary and community activism and to the publication of contemporary Latino/a literature that showcases the aesthetically and thematically diverse body of work being written by newer generation of poets. It has also become particularly effective at recognizing and supporting these emerging writers. Testament to this fact is the current issue of The Acentos Review featuring the work of Andrea Betran, Karina Billini and Yaccaira Salvatierra with her two poems “May” and “Luciérnaga.”

Here is an excerpt from “Luciérnaga:”

Luciérnaga, firefly, I didn’t believe you existed,
but there you were dancing in your radiance
along a damp Mexican path far from the city’s glow.
You were followed by a few others
flickering in and in like tips of fire;
you took them along the man-made trail
walled with dry bush and cacti;
you led them into an opening
among the thorned-arms of the maguey
as a deepening purple sky
slowly swallowed dawn’s dim light. 
I traveled behind you as far as I could,
but that was the last I saw of you.


Ruben Quesada @ Ostrich

A few weeks ago in an interview moderated by Andrés Montoya Poetry Prize winner, Sheryl Luna, Latino Poetry Now featured poet, Carmen Giménez-Smith expressed her enthusiasm for the diversity of Latino/a writers recently being published and for the main actors—journals, magazines, small presses—spearheading these publishing efforts. Among them is Nayelly Barrio’s Ostrich Review.

Issue two of Ostrich, features a poem by Letras Latinas-featured poet Ruben Quesada. Back in June of last year I had the opportunity to profile Ruben Quesada and his debut collection Next Extinct Mammal (Greenhouse Review Press, 2011), of which D.A. Powell writes: “Like Whitman, Quesada is a poet of motion—journeying to the center of the US… toward “that seam in space” where dream and experience intersect.”  His poem “On Telos” is currently featured at Ostrich.


David Campos @ Boxcar Poetry Review

Andrés Montoya Poetry Prize finalist, David Campos was the co-hosted the literary radio show Pakatelas on KFCF 88.1 FM Fresno from 2009-2011. And has his poems featured at The American Poetry Review, The Packinghouse Review, Connotation Press, Verdad, In The Grove, and The San Joaquin Review. His latest poem “After Hearing of My Father’s Passing” is a moving elegy masterfully interwoven with images of loss and redemption and is currently featured at the  Boxcar Poetry Review:

I remember the mountains, the echo of shotgun blasts
herding quails into the sky. Father, I remember hearing you
say how easier it would be to bury a father than a son.

This afternoon it is raining like that day I had no desire
to gut the deer hanging from the tree,
to carry the limp body over the hills,
to have its blood drip on my clothes
and dry in between my fingers.

I have no desire to lower your casket,
your body, into the ground, and watch it sway
before the hard wood of the coffin meets the soft earth.

I still remember the man who kept twenty paces ahead of me
up those mountains, who every now and then looked back
to make sure I was still there.

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