The Washington Post reviews HYBRIDA


Tina Chang’s “Hybrida” (Norton) opens with these powerful lines about her son: “Everywhere I look I see him,/ I have a right to fear for him,/ though I have no right to his color./ His blackness is his to own and what will/ my mouth say of that sweetness.” As she reflects on the threats her son — and to a lesser extent, her daughter — faces, Chang asks evocative questions about identity and the complicated inheritance of anyone “who has ever been born of mixed race.” She also considers the language of motherhood and the “fusion of artistic forms made manifest through the lens/ of protection.” In the process, Chang, the poet laureate of Brooklyn, weaves powerful narratives and uses various poetic forms to create a momentous landscape.

Mother Language: A Q&A with Tina Chang in Poets & Writers


“Poet, activist, editor, educator: One finds Tina Chang wearing as many hats in her daily life as there are layers of identity in her poetic work. Born in Oklahoma to Chinese immigrants, Chang was a year old when her family moved to New York City, not long after which she and her brother moved to Taiwan to live with relatives for two years. Perhaps it’s this early history that informs Chang’s idea of “the porous nature of boundaries—geographic, cultural, and metaphoric,” which she says has both evaded and invaded her imagination.”

National Student Poets in VULTURE

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For the Country’s Most Promising Teen Poets, Poetry Is Activism

It’s that truth that makes government programs like this one so vital, regardless of the current administration’s palpable disdain for the arts and, well, pretty much everything this group of poets cares about. But the fact is that they will be doing the hard work of poetry and activism long after their tenure as National Student Poets has ended. They don’t need government agencies to validate their work. All they, and we, really need is for us to listen.