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Thank you WILDNESS for the 2016 Pushcart Nomination.

I’m honored to be in such great company.



Three of my poems (“ghost”, “meditations on flight” and “the return of Guabancex”) will appear in PERFECT WAVE IV. Pre-order your copy today!


~photos from my RAGGA NYC profile~

Photo Credit: Dan Gutt

My ancestry exists
as a pantheon of whispers;

therefore, the wind
is my ancestry. Far off

sounds in my memory—
ni de aquí, ni de allá

—500 years of colonial rule,
enough generational distance

to be distant now. I work
hard. I work harder. Never

enough. For the product
of colonialism to be present

in the skin, is a thing I think
abt sometimes. I outlive each day

storm-fit and unsouling
myself. Loss. Lostness. Lost & list

-ening. Enemy, animate
my background—the noise

-scape of each triggered thought,
each iteration against oppression

a bone carved into the likeness
of my face—a pedagogy

of my own design—a murmur
of shadows

to which I must return.
& Thaz it.

Thank you so much to Randall Horton for inviting me to read with Xanath Caraza at the University of New Haven. I found myself deeply moved by Xanath’s evocative performance and text. It was truly an honor for me to learn so much in such a brief encounter with her craft. Truly incredible. These are photos of the event (provided by Xanath and Randall).


Many thanks to Urayoán Noel for including me in his Diasporican Poets Mixtape on Harriet: Blog of the Poetry Foundation. Noel concludes, “Ultimately, De Jesus’s “The Erasures of NOCT” and Mercado’s Nuyorican Women Writers Anthology are reminders to privileged-professor-me that the craft of poetry is for many of us inseparable from the ongoing and largely invisible labor of sustaining the communities that in turn sustain us, and I thank them for their work. Let those be our poetry’s foundations.” I’m floored to receive such recognition for what is largely self-published material, especially considering the professional and academic accolades of everyone else on this list (and that Don Share rejected this piece for Poetry). ~hehehe~ but im still up in those webpages cuz i’m a ho with the gift of brujeria.