The National Poetry Series and Miami Book Fair are proud to announce that Alejandro Pérez-Cortés is the winner of this year’s Paz Poetry Prize for an original manuscript of Spanish language poetry.
Pérez-Cortés was born in Colima, Mexico, and he currently teaches Spanish in North Creek High School and Bothell High School in Washington State.
His poems and short stories have been published in newspapers in his home state since 1996. His work was included in the Anthology “Cage of Verses/ Jaula de Versos” published by the literary workshop “Chessboard / Tablero”, that was coordinated by the local poet Efrén Rodríguez. Alejandro’s first English poems are included in the anthology “Soundings from the Salish Sea, A Pacific Northwest Poetry Anthology” (Edmonds, Washington)
“I still remember the day Octavio Paz was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1990. I was in high school and our Literature teacher had us read Sunstone to celebrate the fact that Octavio Paz had earned the Prize, 30 years ago this year. Six years later my first poem was published in a local newspaper in Colima, Mexico; I never imagined that I would earn a prize with Octavio Paz’s last name in the title.
“I am honored to be the first Mexican immigrant (and a son of Colima) to be recognized in this way. My manuscript: Ima and Coli: The Tree that was never a Seed / Ima y Coli: El Árbol que nunca fue Semilla is my own genesis and chronology of Colima.
“I want to express my gratitude to the poet José Kozer, the National Poetry Series, and the Miami Book Fair for taking pride in spreading the voices of the Spanish speaking poets of the United States.”