Emerging BIWOC Poet Spotlight

This monthly series features poems by women of color in the early stages of their publishing careers. It is our intention to create more space at Perugia for the work of poets who are Black, Indigenous, and women of color (BIWOC). We hope using our platform to celebrate this work will expand the readership of the poets we spotlight. This series aligns with Perugia’s mission to support and promote emerging women poets; featured poems will be from poets with no more than one published full-length collection. We’d love to hear from readers with suggestions for poems & poets to feature.


Waiting to Be Discharged from the Maternity Ward

Consider the eyes of a boy who has the heart
to cram a Black Cat firecracker down the throat of a gecko.

Consider his hands, the giddy rush as he tries
and tries to light the match that will ice his blood.

Consider his laughter, the sound of explosion,
the slivers of lizard that land in his hair.

Consider my son, hours old, bruised
from the battle of breaking away from me

as I consider how to keep him
from stealing my lighter, from sneaking out back,

my love in his pocket,
M-80 in his hand.


Tortillera, Texas Review Press, 2021

Poet Bio

Caridad Moro-Gronlier is the author of Tortillera, published by Texas Review Press (2021). Tortillera is the winner of the TRP Southern Poetry Breakthrough Series: Florida, received a 2022 Eric Hoffer Book Award Honorable Mention, was named to the 2022 Eric Hoffer Award Grand Prize Short List, was a 2022 First Horizon Award Finalist, and received a 2022 International Latino Book Award Honorable Mention. She is a contributing editor for Grabbed: Poets and Writers Respond to Sexual Assault (Beacon Press, 2020) and associate editor for SWWIM Every Day, an online daily poetry journal for women-identified poets. Recent work includes “A Heroic Sonnet Crown for Mayor Daniella Levine Cava: We Who Rise from Saltwater, Let’s Sing,” the O, Miami Off-Shore Fellowship: Poets of the Caribbean Diaspora, and publication in (or forthcoming from) from Best American Poetry blog, Verse Daily, Home In Florida: Latinx Writers and the Literature of Uprootedness (UF Press, 2021), and Split This Rock, among others. She resides in Miami, Florida with her family.

To learn more about Caridad Moro-Gronlier, visit her website.