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Voices and Verses

National Poetry Month: “Mouth Sores” By Jasminne Mendez

The Houston poet reads a poem that transcends the pain of illness.


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Michael Leonard, Key Concept Media
Poet Jasminne Mendez

In this sound portrait, we meet poet Jasminne Mendez. She talks about the ways in which poetry is prayer, empowerment, and a life-saver, as well as what it's like to married to another poet. She reads her poem, "Mouth Sores."

Jasminne Mendez is an award-winning author, performance poet, and educator, who received her B.A. in English Literature and her M.Ed. in Curriculum and Instruction from the University of Houston. Her poetry and essays have been published by or are forthcoming in The Acentos Review, Crab Creek Review, Texas Review, La Galería, Label Me Latina/o, Gulf Coast, and others. Her first multi-genre memoir Island of Dreams (Floricanto Press, 2013) was awarded Best Young Adult Latino Focused Book in 2015. She is the Co-Founder and Program Director of Tintero Projects and co-host of the literary podcast Ink Well. Her second book Night-Blooming Jasmin(n)e: Personal Essays and Poetry (Arte Público Press, 2018) will be out this month.

Mendez will read from her new collection on April 25, 7pm at Talento Bilingüe de Houston, presented by Nuestra Palabra: Latino Writers Having Their Say.


This poem is from Night Blooming Jasmin(n)e: Personal Essays and Poetry by Jasminne Mendez (Arte Público Press, 2018) and is reprinted with permission of the author.

Music used: Magic Hour (excerpt) by Kenji Bunch from Ahn Trio: Lullaby For My Favorite Insomniac; Hymne a l'amour (excerpt) by Marguerite Monnot/Edith Piaf from Antonio Pompa-Baldi: The Rascal and the Sparrow; Elegy (excerpt) by Kris Becker from Expansions

To learn more about this series, go here.

Catherine Lu

Catherine Lu

Senior Content Producer & Announcer

While growing up in Chicago and Houston, Catherine’s love for art, music and creative writing was influenced by her teachers and parents. She was once concertmaster of the Clear Lake High School Orchestra and a four-time violinist of the Texas All-State Symphony. A graduate of the University of Chicago, Catherine...

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