Wednesday, January 10, 2018

Join me at these events

Join me at these events!

January 14, 2018 Poets Against Walls Generative Writing Workshop: @ The McAllen Creative incubator : Hosted by Resistencia en la frontera: Poets Against Border Walls 601 N. Main St., McAllen, TX-2-4pm

January 15, 2018 8th Annual MLK Day at Cine El Rey @ 4pm

January 19, 2018 IV Aniversario, Enero Rojo Lunar Anthology release @ 1010 S Standard Ave, San Juan, TX @ 6:30PM

January 20, 2018 Austin Poetry Society- Guest Speaker from 1:30 to 3:30 p.m. at theYarborough Branch Library, 2200 Hancock Dr, Austin.

January 25, 2018 Poetry Celebration Featuring Edward Vidaurre McAllen Poet Laureate 2018 @ The Dustin Michael Sekula Memorial Library 6-8pm

January 27, 2018 Stop the Wall: Rally to Save Santa Ana NWR
Hosted by Save Santa Ana National Wildlife Refuge 11am-2pm

February 8, 2018 Love & Chocolate Poetry Night from 6-8pm @ The Dustin Michael Sekula Memorial Library

February 23, 2018 People’s Poetry Festival Corpus Christi, TX
Bridges Not Borders 12:15-2:00 Panel
Women, Gender and Health 2:15-4:15 Panel

March 2, 2018 2018 Festival of International Books and Arts (FESTIBA) Community Day from 6:00 pm to 10:00 pm in the City of Edinburg Courtyard located at 415 W. University Dr. in Edinburg, Texas.

April 26-29, 2018 The Rio Grande Valley International Poetry Festival (11th Annual)

On-Going: Called to Rise Anthology: Call for Submissions
The McAllen Poet Laureate invites submissions from students throughout the lower Rio Grande Valley for a new poetry anthology by and for youth: Called to Rise.

We call on students in elementary school, middle school, and high school to submit poetry that reflects and conveys their lives living at this particular time in the lower Rio Grande Valley of Texas. The theme is “healing and hope”.

Poetry Celebration Featuring 2018 Poet Laureate of McAllen, TX

Wednesday, January 3, 2018

Called to Rise Anthology Call for Submissions

Called to Rise Anthology
Call for Submissions

The McAllen Poet Laureate invites submissions from students throughout the lower Rio Grande Valley for a new poetry anthology by and for youth: Called to Rise.

We call on students in elementary school, middle school, and high school to submit poetry that reflects and conveys their lives living at this particular time in the lower Rio Grande Valley of Texas. The theme is “healing and hope”.

The anthology will be divided into three different sections for elementary school, middle school, and high school poems. It is expected that the anthology will be published in hardcopy, perfect-bound form as well as in a digital format and distributed widely. The anticipated publication date for the anthology is early Fall, 2018.

Selected contributors will receive one free copy of the anthology, with additional copies available for sale. In addition, contributors will be invited to read at a book release reception along with the editors.

1. Poems may be written in any form and be of any length. However, given page constraints, shorter poems will have a better chance of selection.
2. The theme is “healing and hope” but this can be interpreted loosely. We invite students to be as creative as they’d like.
3. Students may submit with their parents permission or parents may submit on behalf of their children.
4. Only one submission per student.
5. A submission consists of a maximum of five (5) poems.
6.There is no guarantee of selection. The number of entries selected for inclusion depends on space constraints and the number of submissions.

How to Submit
DEADLINE: March 27, 2018
Selected contributors will be notified of their selection no later than May 1, 2018.

Submissions should be sent as a pdf file attachment to:

Subject Line: Called to Rise Anthology

The submission email should include a very short cover letter including the following information:

1. Name of student
2. Grade level at the time of submission
3. School at which student is enrolled at the time of submission
4. Home city/town
5. Contact information, including email address and phone number

Contributors will be asked to submit a form signed by their parents (for those students under 18 years of age) granting all first publication rights to the publishing press.

Questions can be sent to

The Editors
Entries selected for contribution to the anthology will be selected by the past, current, and future Poet Laureates of McAllen, Texas.

Lina Suarez was the 2015-2017 Poet Laureate of McAllen, Texas. A native of the Rio Grande Valley, her poetry is a hybrid of rancheras, polkas, pop, rock, and musica internacional. She is a past recipient of the Mexicasa Writing Fellowship and co-author of the Texas State Library’s Bilingual Programs chapter. She is the author of the YA book Cuentos Wela Told Me: That Scared the Beeswax Out of Me!. Her work appears in such venues as ¡Juventud!: Growing up on the Border and Along the River III: Dark Voices from the Río Grande.

Edward Vidaurre is the 2018 Poet Laureate of McAllen, Texas and the author of four books. I Took My Barrio On A Road Trip (Slough Press 2013), Insomnia (El Zarape Press 2014), Beautiful Scars: Elegiac Beat Poems (El Zarape Press 2015), and Chicano Blood Transfusion (FlowerSong Books, 2017). Vidaurre is the founder of Pasta, Poetry, and Vinoa monthly open mic gathering of artists, poets, and musicians. He resides in McAllen, TX with his wife and daughter.

Rodney Gomez is the 2019 Poet Laureate of McAllen, Texas and the author of Citizens of the Mausoleum (2018), Baedeker from the Persistent Refuge (2019), and the chapbooks Mouth Filled with Night (winner of the Drinking Gourd Chapbook Prize from Northwestern University), Spine (selected by Ada Limón as winner of the Gloria Anzaldúa Poetry Prize), and A Short Tablature of Loss (selected by Eduardo Corral as winner of the Rane Arroyo Prize). His work has appeared in Poetry, The Gettysburg Review, Blackbird, Pleiades, Denver Quarterly, Puerto del Sol, and other journals. He is the son of migrant farm workers and the first in his family to attend college. A proud member of the Macondo Writers’ Workshop and the Chocholichex writing collective, he was educated at Yale, Arizona State, Berkeley, Cornell, and the University of Texas Pan American. He reviews poetry and nonfiction for Latino Book Review and works at the University of Texas Rio Grande Valley. He lives with the love of his life, Sara, in McAllen.

Thursday, October 5, 2017

Call for VIPF 2018 Submissions Has Opened! (Closes March 23)
Boundless: The Rio Grande Valley International Poetry Festival Anthology 2017 is now accepting submissions!
Youth Section Submissions Welcome from High School Students--Same Guidelines (Bio must denote Youth Submission)!

Deadline: Mailed payment postmarked by March 23, 2018 
Submissions: E-mail Submissions Only:

Boundless will be published as a perfect bound edition with an ISBN and will be available on As always, poets do not have to attend our festival or register for our festival in order to submit for publication. 

Previous editions include poets from across Texas, New York, India, Brazil, Portugal, Spain, Mexico, Bangladesh, and England, etc. Be part of this exciting edition!


Submit up to three typewritten poems in a legible font. 
Poems may be of any topic, any language. (We ask for a translation if it is not in English, however.)
Strict 35-line limit per poem, not including title and spaces.
E-mail Submissions Only. Mailed Submissions Will NOT Be Accepted! 
E-mail submissions to
No previously published poems--or translations of previously-published poems--please, except from self-published chapbooks with limited distribution. 
DO NOT place your name or other identifying information on the poems themselves. 
Submit ONE e-mail with ONE attachment (with all three poems). Do not e-mail three separate attachments
The cover letter as the message of the e-mail must include:
Your Name
Title of poem(s) or first line for an untitled poem
E-mail address AND phone number
A short bio – 50 words or less –  written in third person and focusing on your life as a writer
Include a check for $7 payable to "Art That Heals, Inc."

You must supply an e-mail address for contact.

IF YOU WILL NOT COLLECT YOUR ANTHOLOGY IN PERSON, YOU MUST MAIL A SELF-ADDRESSED STAMPED ENVELOPE LARGE ENOUGH FOR A 6" by 9" BOOK--not a flat 6 by 9 paper; so the envelope must be larger than those dimensions! (PAYABLE FOR $3.25). If you will pick up your copy in person, or have a friend pick one up for you, the $3.25 fee is NOT required. We will not purchase envelopes or postage for you. Should the postage cost more, we will cover it.

We strongly prefer to communicate by e-mail:
If you change your e-mail, let us know immediately. 
NOTE: You must still mail your check, or money order (made out to ART THAT HEALS, INC.):

Boundless Editorial Committee
1413 Jay Ave. 
McAllen, TX 78504
Why is there a reading fee?
We are not a vanity press. Not all submissions will be accepted. This is a grassroots festival. Our fee has actually dropped! The fee helps offset the cost of publishing the anthology. Whether your poems are published or not, you will receive a copy of the publication if you follow our guidelines.

Monday, September 11, 2017

Book Review : Edward Vidaurre - Chicano Blood Transfusion (2016) By Gabino Iglesias as seen on Dead End Follies

Long before I started reviewing, I stopped reading poetry. I’d always been a fan, devouring LorcaBukowskiGirondo and Neruda the same way I devoured horror and crime novels. Then, after a few years reading contemporary poetry, I got tired of it. It took me a while, a couple of years, in fact, but I figured what was wrong: the poems were sometimes beautiful and sometimes mediocre, but they were the same in that they rarely said anything of substance. That’s when I started reading poetry again, but only the kind that makes me feel like I’ve witnessed/experienced something. This kind of verses, the ones that affect you and stick to your ribs, only come from writers who have lived and who happen to be natural storytellers. Edward Vidaurre is both of those things and his latest book, Chicano Blood Transfusion, is a soulful trip to a barrio that’s as real and collective as it is imaginary and personal. 
Chicano Blood Transfusion is packed with themes, but those that emerge as cohesive elements are both the most important and the ones that made me mention Vidaurre in a recent article when talking about books that capture Texas: la frontera, memories, suffering, and mestizaje. These are poems that can play in the same arena most contemporary poetry plays in, but they also get dirty and head to el barrio, make you listen to the bullets being fired, and force you to deal with the ghosts of those who didn’t make it:
The missing,
they recite “Howl” across the Rio Grande
but not the Ginsberg lament for his brethren
but the howls of suffering souls crammed in stash houses
across our children's playgrounds, those left
for dead in sweltering sardine packed vessels—
those left alive to remember hell is real.
There’s a new wave of writers exploring the space where identity, multiculturalism, racism, and literature meet, and Vidaurre is at the forefront of that groups when it comes to poetry. What he brings to the table is a hybrid song that’s part barrio poet, part scholar channeling Gloria Anzaldúa, and part visceral reality pulled from a corrido playing somewhere in Texas near the Mexican border. What is being said matters and that’s why it deserves to be read, but it’s being said in a way that uses the tools and liberties that poetry offers. Drink in the last line of “Stray bullet #3”:
Corridos play,
en la cocina
Mamá stirs el caldo
en la sala
la más chiquita falls into
her tea set: she serves
blood to her dolls.
Vidaurre celebrates his youth and women (“Lips of a Chola” is a standout among many great poems) with entries that are as beautiful as they are entertaining, but he never strays far from the realities around him. He remembers things and shares them with readers with his emotions in full display, but he also calls attention to present issues like “gente running and jumping over la pobreza into el racismo” in this country. More than give the collection a gloomy tone, this balance makes the “light” poems shine and puts more power into the punch delivered by those packed with darkness. That the writer can walk this line without ever losing his balance is a testament to his writing chops and something that should put him on the radar of poetry fans everywhere.


When I think of 911- I think of the ones that fell from the buildings to their death via suicide, I hope they died before hitting, I hope they had every beautiful memory playback in slow motion as they fell, I hope they heard the voices of all that loved them in beats by dre sound into their ears, I hope they felt the ripping from their backs as wings were growing out, I wish they had time to see the sunset and sunrise during their descent, I wish they tasted the sweetest fruit in their mouths and the speed of their trip felt like a glide, I hope that when they hit they were watching from a cloud safe and sound.

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Vive el Amor Music Concert and Poetry Reading Featuring: elio & Edward Vidaurre

Vive el Amor Music Concert and Poetry Reading

1704 Dallas Ave
Mcallen Texas 78501
Club 1704 Down Town
NOVEMBER 19TH $10.00 Tickets Doors Open @ 7:00 p.m.