Special guest judge, ABQ City Poet Laureate, Emeritus, Jessica Helen Lopez. Lopez is the author of three poetry books, including cunt. bomb. and The Language of Bleeding: Poems for Festival Internacional de Poesia de Granada, Nicaragua as published by Swimming with Elephants Publications. She is also the recipient of the Zia Book Award for her first poetry book, Always Messing with Them Boys (West End Press). A longtime active member of the ABQ Slam Team, she is a two-time ABQ Women of the World Slam Champion and a member of the 2016 National Group Piece Champion winning ABQ Slam Team. A Pushcart Prize nominee, Lopez is also a Chautauqua Scholar and instructor for UNM Chican@ Studies Department and the Institute of American Indian Arts.
A Pushcart Prize nominee, she is the founder of La Palabra – The Word is a Woman collective created for and by women and gender-identified women. Lopez is a Ted Talk speaker alumni and her talk is titled, Spoken Word Poetry that Tells HERstory. A featured poet on PBS Colores!, you may find some of Lopez’s work at these sites – thebakerypoetry.com, newmexicomercury.com, and asusjournal.org, drunkinamidnightchoir.org., Suspect Press, Somos Enscrito Latino Literary Journal, Casita Grande Press, etc. Her work has been anthologized in A Bigger Boat: The Unlikely Success of the Albuquerque Slam Scene (UNM Press), Earth Ships: A New Mecca Poetry Collection (NM Book Award Finalist she was also a co-editor), Tandem Lit Slam (San Francisco), Adobe Walls, Malpais Review, SLAB Literary Magazine, Courage Anthology: Daring Poems for Gutsy Girls (Write Bloody Press) and Learn then Burn: A Modern Poetry Anthology for the Classroom, second ed. (Write Bloody Press).