A compilation of 65 poems that offer diverse and distinct narratives about the immigrant and refugee experiences.
From being the child of immigrants to being a child immigrant, this collection contains stories of those pursuing the American dream—which sometimes turns into a nightmare. The duality and halfness of the immigrant or refugee identity, the pride, shame, and confusion it can bring, are explored in heartbreaking, breathtaking words. This collection cuts right to the heart of the matter at a time when it is most relevant. But as these pieces—originally published between 1984 and 2018—show, immigration stories are perennially relevant. Authors take their pain and use it to paint gripping accounts of racism, culture shock, separation from family, and the splitting of one’s self that so often occur when dwelling within, outside, and along borders. It is but a glimpse into all the hardships—emotional, physical, mental and otherwise—that displaced people face. The poems take a variety of forms, and the contributors and their families have origins in Nigeria, the Philippines, South Korea, Pakistan, Guyana, Mexico, Syria, Sudan, Guam, Russia, Turkey, and more. Some contributors’ names will be familiar to YA readers, including Elizabeth Acevedo, Samira Ahmed, and Gary Soto.
This symphony of poetry is a necessary series of bruises and balms that will comfort those who have endured, uplift those who continue to struggle, and educate others. (contents, editors’ note, foreword, afterword, biographies) (Poetry/memoir. 12-adult)