John Murillo

John Murillo is the author of the poetry collections Up Jump the Boogie (Four Way Books, 2020; Cypher, 2010), which was a finalist for both the Kate Tufts Discovery Award and the Pen Open Book Award; and Kontemporary Amerikan Poetry (Four Way, 2020), winner of the Kingsley Tufts Poetry Award, the Poetry Society of Virginia’s North American Book Award, and the NAACP Image Award, and a finalist for the PEN/Voelcker Award for Poetry.

Murillo’s second book, Kontemporary Amerikan Poetry, is a reflective look at the legacy of institutional, accepted violence against Blacks and Latinos and the personal and societal wreckage wrought by long histories of subjugation. Carolyn Forché describes the collection as, “a lyric burst of virtuosity and passion long in coming, something between song and prayer, centered on a fifteen-sonnet redoublé on the subject of murderous racism and the rage that pushes against it, the whole of the book becoming an ars poetica for memory as noose and history as burning church.”

He has received honors ranging from the Four Quartets Prize from the T.S. Eliot Foundation and the Poetry Society of America, two Larry Neal Writers Awards, a pair of Pushcart Prizes, the J Howard and Barbara MJ Wood Prize from the Poetry Foundation, to fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts, the Bread Loaf Writers Conference, Fine Arts Work Center, and Cave Canem.

Recently, Murillo’s poems have appeared in American Poetry Review, Poetry, and Best American Poetry 2017, 2019, and 2020.

He is an Associate Professor of English at Wesleyan University.