“How to preserve and maintain our joy”: Vickie on Words on a Wire Podcast, UTEP

Treat your ears and listen to some stories I have on how we can use writing to be self-determined, to be free. I spoke to writer and creative writing professor from the UTEP MFA,  Daniel Chacon this summer about how to make room and art that's about joy and survival. Here's the interview from the podcast Words on … Continue reading “How to preserve and maintain our joy”: Vickie on Words on a Wire Podcast, UTEP

Radio spot! Borderlands New Wave Poetry at the Tucson Festival of Books

Gracias KXCI 91.3 FM, public radio in #Tucson where you can listen to me and Daniel Olivas read stories about our exes, our fathers, and our neighbors on the  Tucson Festival of Books panel, "Borderlands New Wave Poetry." The discussion began with an introduction by the amazing social justice activist and consultant Sarita Gonzales. Listen here!Con … Continue reading Radio spot! Borderlands New Wave Poetry at the Tucson Festival of Books

New York Times Magazine: “Already My Lips Were Luminous”

Selected by National Book Award winner Terrance Hayes for the New York Times Magazine.  “I do not know the language of that place” underscores this poem’s striking balance of ambiguity and mystery. Much is said in the white spaces, caesuras, breaks. The unpunctuated five lines of the first stanza unspool suggestively creepily. The hands in car … Continue reading New York Times Magazine: “Already My Lips Were Luminous”

Fierce as Fuck: The Future of Poetry Is Brown & Queer. A BITCH Magazine Interview

From the Harriet Blog, via the Poetry Foundation: At Bitch Magazine: In "Fierce as Fuck: The Future of Poetry Is Brown & Queer," Soraya Membreno talks with Vickie Vértiz, author of Palm Frond With Its Throat Cut (University of Arizona Press, 2017); and Vanessa Angélica Villarreal, author of Beast Meridian (Noemi Press, 2017). Click here to read the full interview.

New on KCET, Youth Resistance and Los Angeles Photography

From my latest article on Artbound KCET: "The week of November 14, 2016, nearly 4,000 students from about 18 schools in the Los Angeles Unified School District participated in walkouts against the president elect’s selection. As in the 1960s and ‘70s, students gathered at landmarks like Mariachi Plaza, Lincoln Park and city hall for rallies. … Continue reading New on KCET, Youth Resistance and Los Angeles Photography

“Ruda: Ten Remedies,” a play in Anthropoid

Image from Anthropoid website.   A tia gives limpias and embroiders magic. A short play published in late December, "Ruda," an experimental play inside a litany of remedios. Many thanks to Melissa Sipin-Gabon for this opportunity. Excerpt: TÍA: Someone gave you mal de ojo. CHATA: A cabron. Why? TÍA: Why else? Because they’re jealous. CHATA: … Continue reading “Ruda: Ten Remedies,” a play in Anthropoid

Hybrid reading/lecture at RaceCraft: A Symposium, Thursday, October 20

RaceCraft: A Symposium: A[...]* genealogy to the contemporary craft movement Barbara And Art Culver Center Of Arts, 3834 Main St., Riverside, California 92501 Free and open to the public. Limited seating. To reserve a seat, navigate to: <https://artsblock.ucr.edu/Performance/RaceCraft-symposium Slow. Sustainable. DIY. Green. Local. Anti-mainstream. These are some of the keywords associated with the contemporary craft movement. … Continue reading Hybrid reading/lecture at RaceCraft: A Symposium, Thursday, October 20

Writing (US)Americ(k)a(s) with Aja Couchois Duncan, Hugo García Manríquez, Jen Hofer, y Amarnath Ravva

Avenue 50 Studio together with Writ Large Press and and Litmus Press present: Writing (US)Americ(k)a(s) October 15th | 8pm at Avenue 50 Studio 131 N Avenue 50 | Highland Park CA 90042 Litmus Press, in celebration of two recent releases—Restless Continent by Aja Couchois Duncan and Anti-Humboldt by Hugo García Manríquez—is curating a number of … Continue reading Writing (US)Americ(k)a(s) with Aja Couchois Duncan, Hugo García Manríquez, Jen Hofer, y Amarnath Ravva

Juan Gabriel: How he helped families love their queer children– in HOY magazine

In Friday's print edition of HOY magazine in Los ANgeles, reaching thousands of hispanohablantes, I discussed how our working-class immigrant families loved their queer children and neighbors in a way that would not have been possible without Juan Gabriel. Read the whole story in Spanish here, page 13! A HUGE "gracias" to translators Roman Lujan … Continue reading Juan Gabriel: How he helped families love their queer children– in HOY magazine

Macondo Writers’ Workshop 2016– open mic recordings

Thanks to Joseph Rios, here is a sample of the open mic at Macondo Writers' Workshop 2016 in San Antonio. It starts with Carribean Fragoza and ends with yours truly reading the MOZ fans tribute poem, "Lover's Letter." Much love to Laurie Ann Guerrero for all her hard work, and to Alex Espinoza and Tim Z. … Continue reading Macondo Writers’ Workshop 2016– open mic recordings

“Conditions” by Jen Hofer– a translation

"— ninety thousand children crossing the border in the last three years what thirst what listening what refuge what desert harbor what desert keeps at bay what keens what dims what signals we cannot read what enforcement what filament what unmoved substrata what bleeds unregulated despite the body what will not bend will not sleep … Continue reading “Conditions” by Jen Hofer– a translation

Poetry Center Award, Summer Residency at the University of Arizona, Tucson

Vickie is thrilled to have been selected by Natalie Diaz for the 2016 Summer Residency at the Poetry Center. Stay tuned for event details on the culminating reading in August. About the residency: Since 1994, the Poetry Center’s Residency Program has offered writers an opportunity to develop their work. The Poetry Center will award one residency each summer … Continue reading Poetry Center Award, Summer Residency at the University of Arizona, Tucson

Southeast Los Angeles writing featured at AWP 2016

  Join me as I moderate two panels at the #AWP16 writers' conference happening in LA this year! Latinx writers from all over the southland will share our prose and poetry on the following panels, THURSDAY, March 31, 2016: Panel R225. From New Wave and Punk: Musical influences on Latino Literary Aesthetics.   1:30 pm to 2:45 pm, Room … Continue reading Southeast Los Angeles writing featured at AWP 2016

How Bell Gardens is Banking on Bicycle Club Casino’s Luxury Hotel

The sign illuminates eight lanes of the neighboring 710 Freeway. In contrast to the new monument to luxury, the gritty Long Beach Freeway leads into the post-industrial heart of Southeast Los Angeles. Thousands of eighteen-wheelers trucking in the majority of exports into the United States from the Pacific Rim make this the busiest highway with … Continue reading How Bell Gardens is Banking on Bicycle Club Casino’s Luxury Hotel

Cha Cha Nail Covers Take Over the World

This story is part of KCET Departures' series of articles and essays on the Informal Economies of L.A. and how local entrepreneurs create new opportunities outside of formal economic establishments. Read the whole story here. "Don't wait for everything to be perfectly aligned. I had to earn money and invest in my packaging. Earn more … Continue reading Cha Cha Nail Covers Take Over the World

Worth Gold: Feminism and Leadership at the Miss Bell Gardens Pageant

Bell Gardens City Council members with the 2015 Miss Bell Gardens Court. Photo: City of Bell Gardens"All the court members agreed it was a great experience. One princess, Vanessa Perez from UC Irvine said: 'I've lived in this city all my life. I'm proud to be from here and to get more involved.' Mayor Jennifer … Continue reading Worth Gold: Feminism and Leadership at the Miss Bell Gardens Pageant

The Time is Now: Radical Feminism at Rock Camp in Southeast LA

Excerpts from the KCET Departures' essay, "The Time is Now for Chicas Rockeras in Southeast L.A.": After the "Radical Body Love for Young Riot Grrls" workshop led by facilitator Gloria Lucas, one of the campers said, "I love my body!" Volunteers also said they heard girls say, "I'm not ashamed to be round. No soy … Continue reading The Time is Now: Radical Feminism at Rock Camp in Southeast LA

A Man in His Backyard: sightseeing in City of Commerce with author Stephen Gutierrez

Read Vertiz's new essay on KCET: "A Man in His Backyard: sightseeing in the City of Commerce with author Stephen Gutierrez." The essay is like driving through the streets of southeast LA: past its modest homes, past the Citadel Outlets, past parks and schools that made gold medal swimmers and writers like Steve. Of course … Continue reading A Man in His Backyard: sightseeing in City of Commerce with author Stephen Gutierrez

Vertiz teaches free classes in Boyle Heights, sponsored by the Center Theater Group

HOY Los Angeles newspaper wrote a feature on Vickie Vertiz, detailing her desire to teach creative writing, her upcoming book, and her political roots. Read the great Sergio Burstein article in Spanish here. The free workshops will cover nonfiction, play writing, and poetry. The Creative Writing Circles are held at three Boyle Heights libraries from … Continue reading Vertiz teaches free classes in Boyle Heights, sponsored by the Center Theater Group

Latina Leadership in Bell Gardens, a new KCET essay

"In the parking lot of the Food-4-Less supermarket on the corner of Atlantic and Slauson, two high school students stood near the sliding door entrance registering people to vote. The young women wore jeans and T-shirts (Garcia was probably in a Grateful Dead shirt), their hair gathered loosely into ponytails. Their temples beaded with sweat, … Continue reading Latina Leadership in Bell Gardens, a new KCET essay

On KCET’s Departures, “Bell Gardens? That’s Indian town!”: 1980s Pow Wows and Cultural Persistence

My family has lived in Bell Gardens since 1976, but we never drove past a pow wow at a local park. Gatherings that are sometimes open to the public, sometimes sacred ceremonies; they're hard to miss. Those big and bright gatherings with dozens of pop up tents in green and blue, people of all ages … Continue reading On KCET’s Departures, “Bell Gardens? That’s Indian town!”: 1980s Pow Wows and Cultural Persistence

What You See, What You Take With You, in UCLA’s Parrafo magazine

Along with many talented writers, the awesome Sesshu Foster among them, Vickie published a poem in Parrafo magazine's Los Angeles issue. Read an excerpt from her poem below and click the link for the whole enchilada.    "What You See, What You Take With You" AFTER MARISELA NORTE'S PHOTOGRAPHS OF LOS ANGELES     On … Continue reading What You See, What You Take With You, in UCLA’s Parrafo magazine

KCET Communities: “Pioneers of Artistic Revolution: Making Art and Space in Southeast L.A.

As part of  an ongoing project about the importance of the 710 corridor in Los Angeles, Vickie Vertiz contributed an article about the arts, teachers, and artists in Southeast Los Angeles, where she grew up. She names a few writers who also document the lives of the people in Southeast L.A., such as Steve Gutierrez's … Continue reading KCET Communities: “Pioneers of Artistic Revolution: Making Art and Space in Southeast L.A.

El Monte Forever: A Brief History of Michael Jaime-Becerra

As the third installment of  the  Tropics of Meta series, East of East: Mapping Community Narratives in South El Monte and El Monte, in collaboration with the South El Monte Arts Posse, Vickie Vertiz contributed the essay, "El Monte Forever: A Brief History of Michael Jaime-Becerra." The project is an  anthology about the diverse histories, communities, and cultures of … Continue reading El Monte Forever: A Brief History of Michael Jaime-Becerra

Vertiz Hosts UC Riverside MFA Reading Series

Join Vickie Vertiz this school year as she hosts UC Riverside's graduate student reading series. Come hear crisp stories, dangerous poems, and legends about sorrow, robots, and much more. Featured readers from UCR: Aleksandr Peterson, Derrick Ortega, Amanda Ruud,  and more. Special guests: Chad Sweeney, and Cal State San Bernardino MFA students: Tristan Acker, K.L. Straight., Elisha … Continue reading Vertiz Hosts UC Riverside MFA Reading Series

Swallows Book Release Parties, Bay Area, June 7-9th

Come celebrate the official release of Swallows, my poetry collection just out from Finishing Line Press. Friday, June 7th ScholarMatch & McSweeney's offices, 849 Valencia Street at 19th St., from 7-8 pm Featuring Maya Chinchilla, Emilie Coulson, Kenji Liu, Aimee Suzara and special guests. Saturday, June 8 At Aimee Suzara's Finding the Bones book release … Continue reading Swallows Book Release Parties, Bay Area, June 7-9th