Grisel Y. Acosta is a writer from Chicago and who currently lives and teaches in the Bronx. She received her Ph.D. in English—Latino/a literature from the University of Texas at San Antonio and has presented and published her creative and scholarly work internationally. She has performed her work at the Nuyorican Poet’s Café and The Bowery Poetry Club in New York City, the Guadalupe Cultural Arts Center in San Antonio, and the Chicago Poetry Festival, among countless other venues. Grisel has also lectured at various conferences on literature and film throughout the United States, Colombia, and England. Her creative work is in Nineteen Sixty Nine: An Ethnic Studies Journal, Voices de la Luna, MiPoesias, Pembroke Magazine, Private International Photo Review, ¡Tex! Magazine, the NAACP Image Award nominated Check the Rhyme, and Chicago’s After Hours Magazine. Her scholarly work can be found in The Routledge Companion to Latino/a Literature, African American Women’s Language, The Handbook of Latinos and Education, Western American Literature, and Diálogo. She is currently working on two creative projects: Chica!Go!: An Afro-Latina Punk Odyssey, which is a poetic memoir, and First Spanish, which tells the story of Chicago’s Logan Square neighborhood in the 1980s and 1990s, through the eyes of early Latino/a residents. She is an assistant professor at Bronx Community College—City University of New York.
from “The (En)Trails…”
I teach English at Bronx Community College.
Our lush architecture, complete with Roman columns, arches, and domes,
houses several historic landmarks, including the original Hall of Fame.
When the munchkins hail Dorothy and proclaim her copper bust will live
forever in the Hall of Fame, it is my Bronx campus they are referring to.
A curved promenade hails Edgar Allen Poe, Jane Addams, Booker T. Washington,
and all the right statesmen, but I can’t help but think of chitterlings.
The original owner of the campus was New York University;
we got what was left when it went bankrupt. The gorgeous Tiffany glass windows are
entrails of a discarded library that we must make do with.
What beautiful garbage we are so fortunate to have.