Book Review: Nepantla An Anthology of Queer Poets of Color

If you want to get more into poetry, be introduced to a plethora of new poets, and are an ally, have connections to or are in the LGBTQ community, the poetry book Nepantla An Anthology of Queer Poets of Color is perfect for you. It has amazing poems by so many different poets who come from all types of backgrounds and cultures. 

Some of my favorite poets are in this book. Audre Lorde, Ocean Vuong, Danez Smith, and Jericho Brown (aka the 2020 Pulitzer Prize Poetry winner). Their poems are thought provoking, emotional, anger inducing, and most of all raw. They are real and amazing to read out loud or in quiet. I’ve found myself unable to put the book down and annotating the poems that speak to me. 

Some poems that are must reads in this book are “once a marine biologist told me octopuses have three hearts” by Denice Frohman, “Someday I’ll Love Ocean Vuong” by Ocean Vuong, “Elegy With My Mother’s Lipstick” by Paul Tran and “Power” by Audre Lorde. These are just some of the poems that I resonated with or just enjoyed reading. 

Not to mention, this book introduced me to my all time favorite poem which is “Power” by Audre Lorde. It 100% made me ugly cry, and is the first to ever make me have such a visceral emotional reaction. It was hard to stomach but written so, so beautifully. 

There are so many small online book stores and other stores you can get this book besides Amazon. During the pandemic and the rise in tensions with ICE and immigration policy, many poets or color and non color boycotted Amazon in retaliation of their involvement with ICE. Because of this I urge you to buy this book or any other poetry books from websites such as Button Poetry, Nightboat Books, Politics and Prose, or Barnes and Noble.