Martin Espada


Martin Espada was born in Brooklyn, New York, United States on January 1st, 1957 and is the Poet. At the age of 67, Martin Espada biography, profession, age, height, weight, eye color, hair color, build, measurements, education, career, dating/affair, family, news updates, and networth are available.

Date of Birth
January 1, 1957
United States
Place of Birth
Brooklyn, New York, United States
67 years old
Zodiac Sign
Martin Espada Height, Weight, Eye Color and Hair Color

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Martin Espada Life

Martn Espada (born 1957) is a Latino poet and professor at the University of Massachusetts Amherst, where he teaches poetry.

Puerto Rico has been a consistent theme in his poems.


Martin Espada Career

Life and career

Espada was born in Brooklyn, New York. He was introduced to political activism at an early age by his father, a leader in the Puerto Rican community and the civil rights movement. Espada received a B.A. in history from the University of Wisconsin–Madison and a J.D. from Northeastern University (Boston, Massachusetts). For many years, he worked as a tenant lawyer and a supervisor of a legal services program. In 1982, Espada published his first book of political poems, The Immigrant Iceboy's Bolero, featuring photography by his father. This was followed by Trumpets from the Islands of their Eviction (1987) and Rebellion is the Circle of a Lover's Hands. In 2001, he was named the first Poet Laureate of Northampton, Massachusetts.In 2018, Espada received the Ruth Lilly Poetry Prize, a lifetime achievement award given by the Poetry Foundation to a living U.S. poet that carries a $100,000 prize. Espada was the first Latino recipient of the honor.

About his first and subsequent visits to meet family in Puerto Rico, Espada said it was "absolutely transformative", an "absolute revelation", "a process of self-discovery", and that "going there affirms you have a history". His poem "Coca Cola and Coco Frio" is about that.

In 2009, Espada performed in The People Speak, a documentary feature film that uses dramatic and musical performances of the letters, diaries, and speeches of everyday Americans, based on historian Howard Zinn's A People's History of the United States.

In 2021, Espada won the National Book Award for Poetry for his poem "Floaters" about two migrants, Oscar and his daughter Valeria, who drowned crossing the Rio Grande at the U.S. Border.

Espada is a professor at the University of Massachusetts Amherst, and lives in Shelburne Falls, Massachusetts.


Martin Espada Awards

Awards and honours

  • Massachusetts Artists Foundation Fellowship in Poetry, 1984
  • National Endowment for the Arts Creative Writing Fellowship, 1986
  • PEN/Revson Foundation Fellowship in Poetry, 1989
  • Paterson Poetry Prize, 1991
  • National Endowment for the Arts Creative Writing Fellowship, 1992
  • Massachusetts Cultural Council Artist Grant, 1996
  • National Book Critics Circle Award Finalist, 1997
  • Before Columbus Foundation American Book Award, 1997
  • Gustavus Myers Center Outstanding Book Award, 1998
  • Pushcart Prize, 1999
  • Independent Publisher Book Award, 1999
  • Poet Laureate of Northampton, Massachusetts, 2001
  • Antonia Pantoja Award, 2003
  • American Library Association Notable Book, 2004
  • Robert Creeley Award, 2004
  • Charity Randall Citation, 2005
  • John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation Fellowship, 2006
  • Pulitzer Prize Finalist, 2007
  • San Francisco Chronicle Best Books, 2007
  • Library Journal Best Poetry Books, 2007
  • Paterson Award for Sustained Literary Achievement, 2007
  • Premio Fronterizo, 2007
  • National Hispanic Cultural Center Literary Award, 2008
  • USA Simon Fellowship, 2010
  • Massachusetts Book Award, 2012
  • Milt Kessler Poetry Book Award, 2012
  • International Latino Book Award, 2012
  • Walt Whitman Birthplace Poet in Residence, 2012
  • Busboys and Poets Award, 2014
  • Academy of American Poets Fellowship, 2018
  • Ruth Lilly Poetry Prize, 2018
  • National Book Award for Poetry, 2021