Poetry Book Launch Party at Women & Children First

Book Launch Party: LESSONS ON EXPULSION by Erika L. Sanchez

Join us as we celebrate the launch of Erika L. Sánchez’s poetry collection, Lessons on Expulsion.  For this event, Erika will be joined by Krista Franklin, Jacob Saenz, and M. Quinn Stifler.

Poet, novelist, and essayist Erika L. Sánchez’s powerful debut poetry collection explores what it means to live on both sides of the border—the border between countries, languages, despair and possibility, and the living and the dead. Sánchez tells her own story as the daughter of undocumented Mexican immigrants and as part of a family steeped in faith, work, grief, and expectations. The poems confront sex, shame, race, and an America roiling with xenophobia, violence, and laws of suspicion and suppression. With candor and urgency, and with the unblinking eyes of a journalist, Sánchez roves from the individual life into the lives of sex workers, narco-traffickers, factory laborers, artists, and lovers. What emerges is a powerful, multifaceted portrait of survival. Lessons on Expulsion is the first book by a vibrant, essential new writer now breaking into the national literary landscape.

Erika L. Sánchez has won a “Discovery”/Boston Review Poetry Prize and a Ruth Lilly and Dorothy Sargent Rosenberg Fellowship from the Poetry Foundation. Her debut novel is forthcoming from Knopf Books for Young Readers. She lives in Chicago.


Event date:
Friday, July 14, 2017 – 7:30pm
Event address:
Women & Children First
5233 N. Clark St.
ChicagoIL 60640

Literary Death Match

I’m so excited to be part of Literary Death Match on March 10th.

Here are the details:

What is Literary Death Match? Four writers read their own work for seven minutes or less, and are then judged by three all-star judges. Two finalists are chosen to compete in the Literary Death Match finale, a vaguely-literary game to decide the ultimate winner.

Literary Merit: Luis Alberto Urrea,
 Pulitzer Prize finalist & member of the Latino Literature Hall of Fame
Performance: Carrie Coon
, award-winning actress featured in Gone Girl and HBO’s The Leftovers
Intangibles: Irvine Welsh
, author of Trainspotting, GlueFilth and The Sex Lives of Siamese Twins

Audrey Niffenegger
, international best-selling author of The Time Traveler’s Wife & Her Fearful Symmetry
Tim “Toaster” Henderson, performance poet, mural artist and musician
Fred Sasaki, writer, art director for Poetry magazine, gallery curator for Poetry Foundation
Erika L. Sánchez, essayist, Cosmopolitan columnist & author of the upcoming Lessons on Expulsion (2017)

Hosted by LDM creator Adrian Todd Zuniga

Where: iO Chicago1501 N Kingsbury St, Chicago (map)
When: Show at 8pm sharp; doors at 7:30pm
Cost: $12 preorder; $15 at the door (act fast — this will sell out)

Reading at Women and Children First

Tour to End Queer Youth Homelessness featuring Loma, Fatimah Asghar, Richie Hofmann, and Erika L. Sánchez

Join us for an evening of poetry featuring Loma, Fatimah Asghar, Richie Hofmann, and Erika L. Sánchez.

Christopher Soto (aka Loma) is a queer latinx punk poet & prison abolitionist. They were named one of “Ten Up and Coming Latinx Poets You Need to Know” by Remezcla. They were named one of “Seven Trans and Gender Non-Conforming Artists Doing the Work” by The Offing. Poets & Writers will be honoring Christopher Soto with the “Barnes & Nobles Writer for Writers Award” in 2016. They founded Nepantla: A Journal Dedicated to Queer Poets of Color with the Lambda Literary Foundation. They cofounded The Undocupoets Campaign in 2015. Their poetry has been called political surrealist and focuses on domestic violence, queer youth homelessness, and mass incarceration. They received an MFA in poetry from NYU, where they studied with Eileen Myles, Yusef Komunyakaa, Marie Howe, Brenda Shaughnessy, Major Jackson. Originally from the Los Angeles area; they now live in Brooklyn.

Fatimah Asghar is a nationally touring poet, photographer and performer. She created Bosnia and Herzegovina’s first Spoken Word Poetry group, REFLEKS, while on a Fulbright studying theater in post-violent contexts. Her work has appeared or is forthcoming in POETRY Magazine, PEN Poetry Series, The Paris-American, The Margins, and Gulf Coast. She is a Kundiman Fellow and a member of the Dark Noise Collective. Her chapbook “After” was released on Yes Yes Books fall of 2015.

Richie Hofmann is the author of Second Empire (Alice James Books, 2015), winner of the Beatrice Hawley Award.  He is the recipient of a 2012 Ruth Lilly Poetry Fellowship, and his poems appear in The New Yorker, Ploughshares, The New Republic, and Poetry.

Erika L. Sánchez is a poet, essayist, and fiction writer. Her Young Adult novel is forthcoming in fall 2017. Her non-fiction has appeared in Al Jazeera, The Guardian, Rolling Stone, Cosmopolitan, NBC News, and many others. She has received a CantoMundo Fellowship, a “Discovery”/Boston Review Prize, and a Ruth Lilly and Dorothy Sargent Rosenberg Poetry Fellowship from the Poetry Foundation.

Six Point Reading Series

Wednesday, December 9 at 6:00pm – 7:00pm

Chicago Cultural Center 78 E Washington St, Chicago, Illinois 60602

Join the Poetry Center of Chicago for the December installment of the Six Points Reading Series. Admission is free at the Garland Room on the first floor of the Chicago Cultural Center. This will be our final reading of 2015 and we’ll be moving to new locations for our readings in 2016. Stay tuned!

This month, we’re pleased to feature Erika L. Sánchez and Richie Hofmann! Curated and hosted by Danielle Susi.

ERIKA L. SÁNCHEZ is a CantoMundo fellow and winner of the 2013 “Discovery”/Boston Review Prize. She has received scholarships from the Fulbright Program and Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference. Her poetry has appeared in Boston Review, diode, Hayden’s Ferry Review, Hunger Mountain, Pleiades, and Poetry magazine, on Latino USA (NPR), and in the anthology Please Excuse This Poem: 100 New Poems for the Next Generation (2015). Her nonfiction has been published in Al Jazeera, Cosmopolitan, the Guardian, NBC News, Rolling Stone, Salon, and many others. Erika was recently awarded a Ruth Lilly and Dorothy Sargent Rosenberg Poetry Fellowship from the Poetry Foundation. She lives in Chicago.

RICHIE HOFMANN is the author of Second Empire (Alice James Books, 2015), winner of the Beatrice Hawley Award. He is the recipient of a Ruth Lilly Poetry Fellowship, and his poems appear in The New Yorker, Ploughshares, Yale Review, Kenyon Review, and Poetry.

Books will be available for purchase following the reading.