Michael Torres was born and brought up in Pomona, California where he spent his adolescence as a graffiti artist. He earned his MFA in creative writing at Minnesota State University, Mankato. His poetry has appeared in Ploughshares, The Georgia Review, Water~Stone Review and as The Missouri Review’s Poem of the Week, among others. Torres has received awards and fellowships from the Minnesota State Arts Board, the Loft Literary Center, the Jerome Foundation, CantoMundo, and the National Endowment for the Arts.
Learn more : https://www.michaeltorreswriter.com
“All-American Mexican” is a poetry project that grapples with belonging and how, for a person of colour living in the United States, the need for acceptance often encourages a kind of assimilation that causes tension between assimilator and hometown/culture. Torres is interested in the term “All-American” and what it implies: a denotation of excellence (i.e. All-American Foods Inc.); and how a person (traditionally white, American males, i.e. Jack Armstrong, the All-American boy) can self-identify. Considering his heritage, he is interested in how he himself is, can, and cannot be All-American.