When Cuban-American Richard Blanco was chosen by the White House in 2013 to be the United States Inaugural Poet, his selection marked some significant firsts—he was the first immigrant and Latino, the first openly gay, and the youngest poet ever chosen. For All of Us, One Today: An Inaugural Poet's Journey (Beacon Press; $15.00) is a poetic memoir anchored by Blanco’s experiences as the Inaugural Poet. He shares his journey as a Latino immigrant and openly gay man discovering a new, emotional understanding of what it means to be an American. He tells the story of the call from the White House committee, and all the exhilaration and upheaval of the days that followed. Finally, Blanco reflects on his life-changing role as a public voice since the inauguration, his spiritual embrace of Americans everywhere, and his vision for poetry’s new role in our nation’s consciousness.
Richard Blanco describes his poetry collection Looking for The Gulf Motel (University of Pittsburgh Press, $15.95) as “A genealogy of the heart,” in which he explores his family’s emotional legacy and how it has shaped his Latino identity, sexual identity, and understanding of life’s great questions. Blanco is the author of two previous poetry collections Directions to The Beach of the Dead and City of a Hundred Fires, as well as For All of Us, One Today: An Inaugural Poet's Journey, a poetic memoir anchored by Blanco’s experiences as the Inaugural Poet.