Cover Photo: This header image is a headshot of Ruben Quesada next to the cover of his book, Latinx Poetics
Photograph courtesy of the author/bookcover via University of New Mexico Press

Ruben Quesada Introduces Readers to the Expansive World of Latinx Poetics

Ruth Joffre interviews Ruben Quesada on his new book ‘Latinx Poetics: Essays on the Art of Poetry,’ the first anthology devoted to essays exploring the subject from a Latinx perspective.

Latinx Poetics

Ruth Joffre: I remember hearing about this anthology on Twitter, where there was a lot of excitement about the project and what it would mean for Latinx poets. When did the idea for this anthology arise, and how did you go about making it a reality?

Twentieth-Century American Poetics Twentieth-Century American Poetics

plenaperiodic cantoYerba Bruja

RJ: Given this particular political moment and the damage done to the Latinx community by the previous administration, this is a significant time to publish a book like this. Can you speak a little to that question of “why now”?

RJ: In the introduction, you write, “Poems are a record of time,” an insight we see echoed in a number of the essays, which talk about poetry as one means of documenting a writer’s life, culture, and personal growth. Can you expand on this insight and discuss what it means to you?

RJ: As a Latinx writer, I found the experience of reading this book to be one of expansion, illumination, and even validation, and I imagine many readers will have a similar reaction. I’m curious: How has the experience of editing this anthology impacted you as a writer, scholar, and thinker?

RJ: What other books on or of Latinx poetics would you recommend?

Contemporary Costa Rican Poetry

Latinx Comic Book Storytelling

¡Manteca! An Anthology of Afro-Latin@ Poets

Nepantla: An Anthology Dedicated to Queer Poets of Color

RJ: What are you working on next?

Ruth Joffre is the author of the story collection Night Beast. Her work has appeared or is forthcoming in Lightspeed, Nightmare, Pleiades, khōréō, The Florida Review Online, Wigleaf, Baffling Magazine, and the anthologies Best Microfiction 2021 & 2022, Unfettered Hexes: Queer Tales of Insatiable Darkness, and Evergreen: Grim Tales & Verses from the Gloomy Northwest. She co-organized the performance series Fight for Our Lives and served as the 2020-2022 Prose Writer-in-Residence at Hugo House. In 2023, she will be a visiting writer at University of Washington Bothell.