Juan Felipe Herrera

The son of migrant Mexican farm workers, JUAN FELIPE HERRERA spoke barely any English when he entered school.  He started out with an outsider’s relationship to English and its literary traditions, and this has given him a very flexible approach to his adopted language.  He credits great teachers and endless hours at the free local library with changing his life by introducing him to art, music and literature from many cultures, and giving him the confidence to find his own voice.  Recently, he was named California’s first Chicano Poet Laureate.  He is the author of many collections of poetry, including Half of the World in Light: New and Selected Poems (2008), a recipient of the PEN/Beyond Margins Award; 187 Reasons Mexicanos Can't Cross The Border: Undocuments 1971-2007 (2007); and Crashboomlove (1999), a novel in verse.  He has published many young adult novels and children’s books.


Visit his page on the Poetry Foundation website here

Click here to read our blog about Juan Felipe Herrera. 



Conversation: From Homer to Hip-Hop: Poetry and the Oral Tradition
Juan Felipe Herrera, Kurtis Lamkin, Taylor Mali, Rachel McKibbens
Chase Room

Reading and Conversation
Eduardo C. Corral, Juan Felipe Herrera, Jane Hirshfield
Prudential Hall

Richard Blanco, Eavan Boland, Henri Cole, Sharon Dolin, Nikky Finney, Terrance Hayes, Juan Felipe Herrera, Jane Hirshfield, Fanny Howe, Kurtis Lamkin, Dorianne Laux, Ada Limón, Thomas Lux, Rachel McKibbens, Taylor Mali, Joseph Millar, Idra Novey, Gregory Orr, Benjamin Alire Sáenz, Patricia Smith, Arthur Sze, Larissa Szporluk, Natasha Trethewey, C.K. Williams, Raúl Zurita
Prudential Hall


Festival Poet Readings
Amiri Baraka, Eavan Boland, Juan Felipe Herrera, Dorianne Laux, Rachel McKibbens
Prudential Hall

Conversation: Who Is It Can Tell Me Who I Am: Poetry and Identity
Nikky Finney, Juan Felipe Herrera, Arthur Sze
First Peddie Baptist Memorial Church

Poets on Poetry
Juan Felipe Herrera
Trinity & St. Philip’s Cathedral


Festival Poets Reading
Sharon Dolin, Juan Felipe Herrera, Mark Hillringhouse
First Peddie Baptist Memorial Church

Conversation: A Voice for the Voiceless
Philip Levine, Juan Felipe Herrera, Natasha Trethewey, Raúl Zurita
Prudential Hall

Conversation: On Craft
Juan Felipe Herrera
Newark Museum


Shuffle, Cramproll, Paradiddle and Stomp
Ras Baraka, Juan Felipe Herrera, Kurtis Lamkin, Rachel McKibbens with dancer Maurice Chestnut
Victoria Theater

Conversation: When Politics Is Personal
Nikky Finney, Juan Felipe Herrera, Fanny Howe, Raúl Zurita
Victoria Theatre

Readings & Music
Juan Felipe Herrera, Natasha Trethewey, Gregory Orr, Eavan Boland, Amiri Baraka, Philip Levine
Prudential Hall