2020 Annual Chapbook Reading

Raquel Salas Rivera in profile against a blue background
Raquel Salas Rivera
spread with poem and green design
reedbed ash and other products (2020) Raquel Salas Rivera
cyanotype cover with branches in white
ECHOESISTEMAS /lentos cerramientos (2020) Katerina I. Ramos-Jordán
Katerina I. Ramos-Jordán with brown wavy hair and glasses in a red shirt
Katerina I. Ramos-Jordán
blue, white, and brown broadside with the poem Morning Chant: Scatter printed on it
Morning Chant: Scatter (2020) Rushi Vyas
Rushi Vyas with buzzed beard and hair in a white shirt with a red scarf
Rushi Vyas
shiny red text on a matte black and white photo of undulating lines
In the Restaurant El Aljibe (2020) Emily Bludworth de Barrios
Emily Bludworth de Barrios with smooth red hair pulled back
Emily Bludworth de Barrios

Event Info

Join us for an evening of celebrating the work of the Chapbook Program participants with the reveal of this year’s chapbooks and broadsides.

The Chapbook Program annually awards one poet with the publication of their manuscript as a limited edition chapbook, designed, printed, and bound by artists at Center for Book Arts. This year’s contest poet is Katerina I. Ramos-Jordán, who was selected by Guest Judge Raquel Salas Rivera.

This evening will feature poetry readings by Raquel Salas Rivera, Katerina I. Ramos-Jordán, Emily Bludworth de Barrios, and Rushi Vyas.

We will also hear from the artists who designed, printed and assembled this year’s chapbooks and broadsides:

Aurora De Armendi and Ana Paula Cordiero designed and produced Salas Rivera’s chapbook, ceniza cañaveral y otros productos (reedbed ash and other products). Ramos-Jordán’s chapbook, ECHOESISTEMAS /lentos cerramientos is designed by Erika Morillo and printed by Keith Graham.

Emily Bludworth de Barrios’ broadside is designed and printed by Claudia Kaatziza Cortínez. Rushi Vyas’ broadside is designed and printed by Amber McMillan Braverman.


Guest Judge

Raquel Salas Rivera (Mayagüez, 1985) is a Puerto Rican poet, translator, and editor. His honors include being named the 2018-19 Poet Laureate of Philadelphia and receiving the New Voices Award from Puerto Rico’s Festival de la Palabra. He is the author of five full-length poetry books. His third book, lo terciario/ the tertiary won the Lambda Literary Award for Transgender Poetry and was longlisted for the 2018 National Book Award. His fourth book, while they sleep (under the bed is another country), was longlisted for the 2020 Pen America Open Book Award and was a finalist for CLMP’s 2020 Firecracker Award. His fifth book, x/ex/exis won the inaugural Ambroggio Prize. antes que isla es volcán/ before island is volcano, his sixth book, is an imaginative leap into Puerto Rico’s decolonial future and is forthcoming from Beacon Press in 2022. He holds a Ph.D. in Comparative Literature and Literary Theory at the University of Pennsylvania and now writes and teaches in Puerto Rico.

Selected Chapbook Manuscript Poet

Katerina I. Ramos-Jordán is a cross-disciplinary poet, born and raised in San Juan, P.R. She uses verse, dance, and media to explore the intersections between colonialism, ecology, and embodiment. She has been published in the poetic anthology Puerto Rico en mi corazón (Anomalous Press 2019). Ramos-Jordán is currently a Mellon Undergraduate Fellow and a Beinecke Scholar at Wesleyan University, where she is finishing her undergrad degree in English and Dance with a concentration in Caribbean Studies.

Runners up

Emily Bludworth de Barrios is the author of Splendor, a book of poems. She’s also published two chapbooks: Women, Money, Children, Ghosts (Sixth Finch 2016), and Extraordinary Power (Factory Hollow Press 2014). Her poems have appeared in publications such as jubilat, The Poetry Review, The Harvard Review, Columbia Journal, Gulf Coast, Sixth Finch, and Tender. Emily was born in Houston and raised in Egypt, the United States, and Venezuela; she currently lives in Houston with her husband and three children, with impending plans to relocate to Santa Cruz, Bolivia.

Rushi Vyas is an American poet of Indian origin living in Aotearoa/New Zealand. His first manuscript, When I Reach For Your Pulse, is a two-time Finalist for the National Poetry Series. His first chapbook, Physics from the Scaffold, was named Runner-Up for the 2020 Center for Book Arts Chapbook Contest. Recent poems have featured in Adroit, The Offing, Tin House, 32 Poems, Redivider, Waxwing, Boulevard, AQR, Landfall (NZ), and elsewhere. He is currently a PhD student in Literature at Te Whare Wānanga o Otāgo where he is writing a creative/critical project on bewilderment, relationality, and ecstasy in the poetics of walking.

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