In poetry, the lyric “I” appears so often, yet our communities value collectivity and cooperation over individualism. How can poetry reflect the cultural values of kinship and community, and still be firmly rooted in poetic lyric tradition? What are our roots and origin stories? What are our collective aspirations and heartbreaks?
Barbara Jane Reyes was born in Manila, Philippines and raised in the San Francisco Bay Area, she is the author of Diwata (BOA Editions, Ltd., 2010), winner of the Global Filipino Literary Award for Poetry, Gravities of Center (Arkipelago Books, 2003) and Poeta en San Francisco (Tinfish Press, 2005), which received the James Laughlin Award of the Academy of American Poets. She is an Andrew W. Mellon Foundation Fellow. Her fourth book, To Love as Aswang, is forthcoming from PAWA, Inc.