Joaquín Zihuatanejo

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Poet Laureate of Dallas, Texas, 2022–

Joaquín Zihuatanejo, born January 16, 1971, in Dallas, Texas, is a Chicano/Latinx poet and award-winning teacher. He received his BA in English from the University of North Texas and his MFA in poetry from the Institute of American Indian Arts in Santa Fe, New Mexico.

Zihuatanejo is the author of Occupy Whiteness (Deep Vellum Books, 2024); Dollars for Scholars (CoolBooks Publishing, 2020); Arsonist (Anhinga Press, 2018), winner of the Anhinga-Robert Dana Prize for Poetry; Fight or Flight (CoolBooks Publishing 2016); Of Fire and Rain (Bonita Blvd Press, 2012), coauthored with Natasha Carrizosa; Family Tree (Bonita Blvd Press, 2010); Barrio Songs (Bonita Blvd Press 2008). 

Zihuatanejo is the winner of the 2008 Individual World Poetry Slam and the 2009 European World Cup of Poetry Slam held in Paris, France. His poem, “Nahui Ehecatl First Son Jaguar Son” was nominated for a Pushcart Prize by Sonora Review.

Zihuatanejo has been a Latinx Scholar at Tin House and a visiting faculty member at The Frost Place Conference on Teaching Poetry. In 2022, he was named the inaugural poet laureate of Dallas, Texas. The following yearZihuatanejo received an Academy of American Poets Laureate Fellowship