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5 Must-read poetry books by Latinas

Here at Latinas in Business we love supporting our fellow Latinas and we also love a good book! Throughout the month we’ve been enjoying Latina poetry and have put together a list of must-reads we think you’ll love. So, before National Poetry Month ends, here are five poetry books by Latinas to check out. 

5 Must-read poetry books by Latinas

latina poets

Déjame Contarte Lo Que Dice El Corazón by Paloma Alcantar 

Synopsis:

This book is a walk through the different nuances of love. Each sentence written here is a mental note for the author, and for any heart willing to accept them. In them you will discover the fragility of life, and that sometimes it is essential to break everything to see clarity from another perspective. I wish that from the hand of poetry, you reconcile with your heart and open the door to this energy in all its forms.

Paloma Alcantar is a Mexican writer, author and poet living in Atlanta, Georgia. She is currently a content creator for the organizations Women’s Economic Empowerment Global Life, and Alquimia Global for Human Rights. Most recently she has studied various personal development topics as part of her own growth process.

latina poets

Corazón by Yesika Salgado

Synopsis: 

Corazón is a love story. It is about the constant hunger for love. It is about feeding that hunger with another person and finding that sometimes it isn’t enough. Salgado creates a world in which the heart can live anywhere; her fat brown body, her parents home country, a lover, a toothbrush, a mango, or a song. It is a celebration of heartache, of how it can ruin us, but most importantly how we always survive it and return to ourselves whole.

Yesika Salgado is a Los Angeles based Salvadoran poet who writes about her family, her culture, her city, and her fat brown body. She has shared her work in venues and campuses throughout the country. Salgado is a two time National Poetry Slam finalist and the recipient of the 2020 International Latino Book Award in Poetry. She is an internationally recognized body-positive activist and the writer of the column Suelta for Remezcla. Yesika is also the co-founder of Chingona Fire, a poetry collective based on highlighting Latina feminist poets. 

latina poets

Mujer de Color(es): A Poetic Experience by Alejandra Jimenez

Synopsis:

Concocted into a short collection of poems, lyrical essays, prayers, and portraits, Mujer de Color(es): A Poetic Experience is—an ode to imperfections, an ode to the divinity within the mundane, an ode to our metamorphic culturas, an ode to the reverberant voices of brown women and femmes.

It is the act of looking at your fears straight in the face and honoring them for trying to protect you but surrendering them to achieve growth. It is a reclamation of our feminine strengths: nurturing, resilience, sexuality, creativity, spirituality, and so many more. It is one path, of a billion, towards healing one person and, through it, the collective feminine consciousness; Y, esto es solo el principio.

Alejandra Jimenez, otherwise Aleja, is a self-identifying queer chicanx poeta. Aleja is the first-born, of 5 children, of two Mexican-Immigrant parents, from Zacatecas and Jalisco, MX. She grew up in Santa Ana, CA and later in the Inland Empire, epicenters of Latinx communities, as well as frequently visiting her parents’ native country, Mexico. Aleja’s writing is highly influenced by a desire to become the representation of her people, her culture, and herself she did not see growing up.

Latina poets

My Wicked, Wicked Ways by by Sandra Cisneros 

Synopsis: 

A collection of poetry by the author of The House on Mango Street attests to the author’s original passion and reveals her talent for employing the precision and musicality of language in verse both comic and sad. 

Publishers Weekly said, “This collection reveals the same affinity for distilled phrasing and surprise, both in language and dramatic development, found in Cisneros’s volumes of short stories, Woman Hollering Creek and The House on Mango Street. Of the book’s four parts, the first two immerse the reader in the Chicana homefront, including the poet’s own place in it, presumably the San Antonio familiar from her prose work. The remaining two parts leave the barrio behind, as the author’s world becomes more cosmopolitan and still more personal.”

Sandra Cisneros is a poet, short story writer, novelist, essayist, performer, and artist. In addition to her writing, she has fostered the careers of many aspiring and emerging writers through two nonprofits she founded: the Macondo Foundation and the Alfredo Cisneros del Moral Foundation. As a single woman she made the choice to have books instead of children. A citizen of both the United States and Mexico, she currently lives in San Miguel de Allende.

Latina poets

If Love Had a Name by Davina Ferreira

Synopsis:

If Love Had a Name is a collection of poems centered around self-love & womanhood. It is a lyrical whirlwind of self-love, independence, and the courage a woman needs to explore the world without a partner holding her hand and leading her through it. Ferreira has gathered up every ounce of womanly pride necessary to stand on her two strong feet and placed it here between these pages. 

Davina Ferreira is a bilingual poet, social entrepreneur, author, speaker, and  founder of Alegría Bilingual Media. Davina was born in Miami but grew up in Colombia. She is the quintessential symbol of the immigrant’s American Dream. Upon arriving in the U.S. Ferreira attended college, receiving a B.A. in Fine Arts and worked as an actress with the Bilingual Foundation of the Arts. Later on, she began a career in journalism, which led her to launch ALEGRÍA Magazine. 

Her book, Finding My ALEGRIA is an inspirational memoir,  which she hopes will motivate young entrepreneurs around the world to pursue their dreams regardless of their circumstances. 


While National Poetry Month may be drawing to a close, we definitely won’t stop reading our favorite Latina poets! We hope this list of poetry books by Latinas sparked some inspiration for your next read.

Latina poets

5 Latina poets to read this National Poetry Month

National Poetry Month is here! And today we are celebrating five Latina poets who are using their writing to explore themes of Latina identity and culture, advocating for their communities, and critiquing harmful stereotypes. 

These poets are speaking their truths in a world that often wishes to silence diverse voices and marginalized identities. Let us all amplify their voices and also enjoy some incredible writing by Latina poets. 

Melania-Luisa Marte

 

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Melania Luisa Marte is a writer, poet, and speaker from New York living in the Dominican Republic. Her poetry explores topics including her Caribbean roots, intersectionality, and self-love. She gained fame with viral poem “Afro-Latina” and her work has also been featured by Ain’t I Latina, Mitu, The Root, Teen Vogue, Facebook, Telemundo, Remezcla, and People En Español. 

Melania’s chapbook “Plantains and our Becoming” focuses on the Black diaspora, nature, love, and rest.

Yesika Salgado

 

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Yesika Salgado is a Los Angeles based Salvadoran poet and two time National Poetry Slam finalist and the recipient of the 2020 International Latino Book Award in Poetry. Her work has been featured in the Los Angeles Times, New York Times, Teen Vogue, Univision, Spotify, CNN and many more networks and publications. 

As an internationally recognized body-positive activist her work explores the topics of body image, self-love, culture, her city and her family. 

Yesika is the author of the best-sellers Corazón, Tesoro, and Hermosa

Natalie Diaz 

 

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Natalie Diaz is a Pulitzer Prize winning, Mojave American poet, language activist, and educator. Her work weaves together her Latina and Indigenous identity in a “constellation” of work that explores themes of identity, love, culture, joy, grief, injustice, and violence. 

She is the author of the poetry collections Postcolonial Love Poem (2020), winner of the Pulitzer Prize; and When My Brother Was an Aztec (2012). 

Ariana Brown

 

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​Ariana Brown is a queer Black Mexican American poet from the Southside of San Antonio, Texas, now based in Houston, Texas.  She is a 2014 national collegiate poetry slam champion and has been writing, performing, and teaching poetry for over ten years. Her in her work and poetry collections We Are Owed. (Grieveland, 2021) and Sana Sana (Game Over Books, 2020) she investigates themes such as queer Black personhood in Mexican American spaces, Black relationality and girlhood, loneliness, and care. 

Melissa Lozada-Oliva 

 

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Melissa Lozada-Oliva is a “Guatelombian” (Guatemalan-Colombian) American poet and screenwriter living in Brooklyn.  Her debut book Peluda (Button Poetry 2017) explores the intersections of Latina identity, feminism, hair removal and what it means to belong. Her most recent book, Dreaming of You is a novel-in-verse explores themes of Latinidad, womanhood, obsession, and disillusionment.

Melissa initially gained fame with her viral poem, “My Spanish,” exploring her experiences as a non-Spanish speaking Latina.  

When she’s not writing, she also co-hosts the podcast Say More with Olivia Gatwood Who Is a Massive Bitch, where they dissect the world through a poetic lens.

You might be interested: 10 Books by Latinx authors to read this summer