Launch of Puerto Rico en mi Corazón

Image: Erica Mena

A reading of Puerto Rican poets to mark the publication of Puerto Rico en mi Corazón, a bilingual anthology of poets from the island and the diaspora.

In the months following Hurricane Maria’s passage over Puerto Rico in 2017, Puerto Rican poets, translators, book artists and editors Erica Mena, Raquel Salas Rivera, Ricardo Maldonado, and Carina del Valle Schorske came together to curate poetry as a response to the disaster. This book is the result.

The poems, some of which predate the storm, others which were written in response, look beyond the headlines to undertake reparative work across languages and oceans.

The event will feature live readings by Andrés Cerpa, Elisa Gonzalez, Joey De Jesus, Erica Mena, Ana Portnoy Brimmer, Raquel Salas Rivera, and Vincent Toro, with an introduction by Carina del Valle Schorske.

Andrés Cerpa is the author of Bicycle in a Ransacked City: An Elegy. A recipient of fellowships from the McDowell Colony and Canto Mundo, his work has appeared or is forthcoming in Ploughshares, Poem-a-Day, The Kenyon Review and The Rumpus.

Elisa M. Gonzalez is a poet, essayist and fiction writer. Her work appears or is forthcoming in Epiphany, Harvard Review, Hyperallergic, the New Yorker and elsewhere. She has received fellowships from the Kingsley Trust Association, the Norman Mailer Foundation, the Bread Loaf Writer’s Conference, and the Fulbright Program.

Joey De Jesus is the author of HOAX, NOCT- The Threshold of Madness. Joey co-edits poetry at Apogee Journal, is an Advisory Board Member at No, Dear Magazine, and received the 2019-20 BRIC ArtFP Project Room Commission and 2017 NYFA/NYSCA Fellowship in Poetry.

Erica Mena is a Puerto Rican poet, translator and book artist. Their book Featherbone, won a 2016 Hoffer First Horizons Award. Their translation of the Argentine graphic novel The Eternaut by H.G. Oesterheld and F. Solano Lopez won a 2016 Eisner Award. They are the editor in chief and executive director of Anomalous Press.

Ana Portnoy Brimmer is a Puerto Rican poet-performer, writer, and ARTivist. She is the inaugural recipient of the Sandra Cisneros Fellowship, a Pushcart Prize nominee, and a co-organizer of the #PoetsForPuertoRico movement. Her chapbook, To Love An Island, is the winner of YesYes Book’s 2019 Vinyl 45 Chapbook Contest, and is forthcoming.

Raquel Salas Rivera is the author of Caneca de anhelos turbios; tierra intermitente/ intermittent land, which were published in Puerto Rico; lo terciario/ the tertiary, winner of the 2018 Lambda Literary Award for Transgender Poetry; and while they sleep (under the bed is another country). They are co-editor of Puerto Rico en mi corazón, the inaugural recipient of the Ambroggio Prize and the Laureate Fellowship, both from the Academy of American Poets, and the Poet Laureate of Philadelphia.

Carina del Valle Schorske is a writer and translator living between New York City and San Juan, Puerto Rico. She is currently at work on her first book, a psychogeography of Puerto Rican culture, forthcoming from Riverhead and tentatively titled NO ES NADA: Notes from the Other Island. She is also co-editor of Puerto Rico en mi corazón.

Vincent Toro is the author of Stereo.Island.Mosaic., which won the Sawtooth Poetry Prize and The Poetry Society of America’s Norma Farber First Book Award, and the forthcoming Tertulia. He has an MFA in poetry from Rutgers University and is a contributing editor for Kweli Literary Journal. He is recipient of a Poet’s House Emerging Poets Fellowship, a NYFA Fellowship in Poetry, and the Metlife Nuestras Voces Playwriting Award.