Called To Rise: Rio Grande Valley Youth Anthology (2018)

Here, from the caldrons of the South Texas borderlands, we behold the truth, many truths — made of desired love, family loss, “raspa stands,” the delight of art and the “Irony that Dreamers can’t dream,” as Golbanoo Sateyesh writes. And there is wisdom, as Luis E. Godinez provides, “Healing is the only rare face/ that needs to spread the news.” Yet, at the core of this dawn-eyed Río Grande Valley collection, we are checked by the heated question of our times —Valeria D. Lorm, unpacks the burn, “ Are you a Citizen of the United States?” To rise, to survive, to find the path of total being in teen zones where the fears of school shootings coexist with expansive possibility – these are the streaming elements that flourish in these poems. Let us salute each poet, each teacher and school, each familia and neighborhood for nourishing these poets busy with the creative tasks of re-imagining Texas and a nation undergoing critical change. Let us salute, Edward Vidaurre and Rodney Gomez, our City of McAllen Poet Laureates. A rare, most needed, and illuminating  set of heart-flamed and soul-chiseled verse — ¡Bravo!
     – Juan Felipe Herrera, Poet Laureate of the United States 2015-2017
Edited by Rodney Gomez and Edward Vidaurre.
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Forthcoming: Selena Anthology

** SUBMISSIONS ARE CLOSED **

Are you that person who always plays “Como La Flor” on your cellphone late at night when you are sitting around drinking with friends? Do you sing “Si Una Vez ” at Karaoke night? Do you load up the jukebox with “No Me Queda Mas” on repeat and dance by yourself? Do you always get sad sometime in March and you don’t know why? Because Selena died on March 30th, 1995! That’s me, that’s you. And we can all tell our stories about hearing the news, twenty three years ago, that, possibly, she was dead.

Since then, Selena has been enshrined in tableaus in Mexican restaurants, on candles, in graffiti, in our writings, and in our corazones. Her music is as popular as ever, and so many Tejan@s, Chican@s, and others have been influenced by her.

We are looking to collect fiction, nonfiction, poetry and basically anything else that can be printed on the page, as long as it in some way reflects the spirit of Selena. You will know as soon as you read this if you are someone who should contribute and probably what you should contribute as well. I’ll need all of your contributions by Jan 31, 2019. Don’t hesitate!

No real publication requirements, but try to keep longer pieces under 2500 words. Send all submissions to FlowerSongBooks@gmail.com.

– Editor

 

First Look: Cenzontle/Mockingbird: Songs of Empowerment

Forthcoming title from Daniel Garcia Ordaz. Coming April 2018.

A code-switching collection of diverse poetic forms, styles, and personas celebrating the dynamics of the human voice & spirit. Daniel García Ordaz, the Poet Mariachi, the author of You Know What I’m Sayin’?, encourages readers to perform the text aloud, such as his adaptation of Shakespeare’s “Romeo & Juliet.” A polyglottic exhibition of empowerment through performance. Influenced by and dedicated to the memories of Maya Angelou and Gloria E. Anzaldúa.

First Look : Chicano Blood Transfusion

Forthcoming from Edward Vidaurre in March 2018.

Sometimes the grind of life in modern America sucks Latin@s dry: between the daily micro-aggressions and institutional racism, la gente find themselves drained of that essential chispa. At times like those, we need a Chicano blood transfusion like the one Edward Vidaurre injects straight into our souls in his most recent collection. So just lean back and let yourself be guided through the graffitied recesses of our collective barrio by one of the most important poets of deep South Texas, whose unique voice blends street, Beat, form and striking breadth.

 

First Look: La Espiral de la Locura

Espiral cover B

Forthcoming January 2016.

Quince cuentos de una de las imaginaciones más singulares de la literatura oscura. Una travesía a lo desconocido. Un viaje escalofriante a lo fantástico. Un salto tenebroso al vacío psicodélico de las emociones fuertes. Alejandro Cabada te acompaña al dominio de lo onírico, donde todas las leyes de lo establecido son destruidas y no hay tiempo ni espacio para meditarlo. Abróchate el cinturón. La espiral comienza a girar.

First Look: Transplant

Transplant cover full

Forthcoming later this month, Transplant by Shirley Rickett.

Where is home? Mostly in the mind and spirit. If we visit a place where once we lived, it’s the memories crowding in that take us back, not the plaster and brick. Moving is in our DNA, even if we have lived in the same place for years. The wood and glass changes because we change. In The Poetics of Space, Gaston Bachelard says that all inhabited space bears a notion of home, and that an entire past comes to dwell in a new abode. Transplant explores these themes of change and loss, and aging, and more. It seeks to carry out what Bachelard calls the function of poetry: “to give us back the situations of our dreams.”

First Look: Unwoven

Unwoven cover final

Forthcoming from Erika Garza-Johnson, Unwoven.