Now In Color
Winner of the Perugia Press Prize, forthcoming Sept. 2020
Now In Color explores the multigenerational immigrant experience of Mexican-Americans who have escaped violence, faced pressures to assimilate, and are now seeking to reconnect to a fragmented past. These poems illuminate the fluidity of language and of perception through both small hypocrisies and real atrocities. One of Balderrama’s strategies is to use the development of motion pictures and Technicolor as a lens through which to examine personal and cultural histories and stereotypes. She also considers bilingual expectations through an innovative series of Spanish definition poems. Balderrama documents pieces of her family’s oral tradition and draws connections to ongoing injustices experienced by current migrant families, offering a living picture of a present inevitably tied to and colored by its past. Through the poetics of witness, ekphrasis, portraiture, and family mythos, Now In Color deepens our understanding of hybrid identities and calls attention to those impacted by tensions along the U.S.-Mexico border.
Crab Orchard Series in Poetry 1st Book Award
Pleiades Press’s Editors Prize and Lena-Miles Wever Todd Prize