Best Local Poet

Anel I. Flores

Winner: Anel I. Flores

anelflores.com

From a literary perspective, self-described "lesbiana, queer author and artivist" Anel I. Flores is arguably best recognized for Empanada, which began as a play and developed into a published collection of coming-of-age vignettes following a passionate young lesbian named Paloma. Whether writing, drawing or painting, Flores imbues her work with themes of sexuality, gender, race and identity. During National Poetry Month, she rose to the occasion of San Antonio Poet Laureate Andrea "Vocab" Sanderson's #MyTongueIsChallenge with a poem conjuring sultry seaside moments: "My tongue is ocean wave / Whipping high tide / Pushing hills / Hips on both sides of plump ass / Splitting apart / Handfuls of salt / Seduction ..." In addition to taking top honors as this year's Best Local Poet, Flores deserves special recognition for her role as co-founder of LezRide SA, an initiative that "uses cycling and exercise to promote, inspire and support LGBTQ inclusion, diversity, wellness and community building through healthy adventures."

2. Sharon Ruth Hensley

facebook.com/sharonhensley76

3. Jenny Browne

jennybrowne.com

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