After having three of his poems featured in an online literary journal earlier this year, Lee College Honors Program student Fernando Izaguirre has again become a published author: a full collection of his free-verse, bilingual poetry has been released nationwide as the e-book "Eloquence."
"'Eloquence' centers on three main themes: love, Mexican culture and nature," said Izaguirre, a first-generation college student who grew up in Anahuac and attended high school in Baytown. "Each poem is a story that will touch the hearts of people who dream of finding a meaningful relationship, equal opportunity and purpose in the world around them."
Editorial Trance, a New York-based digital publishing company, selected Izaguirre's poetry because it honors his Mexican-American ancestors, said CEO Marlena Fitzpatrick. She called the book an "ode to a new generation of Latinos in the United States."
"It is refreshing to read such a young voice who understands the power of community, brotherhood, hard work and family," Fitzpatrick said.
For Izaguirre, writing has long been a way to express his emotions. The son of a single mother who immigrated to America, he weaves together English and Spanish to describe the poverty and hardship that characterized his early life - and the optimism and hope he holds for the future. He will graduate from Lee College in May with associate degrees in both English and Mexican-American Studies.
Izaguirre's Honors Program instructors have also praised his writing and supported his efforts to be published. This year alone, he has presented his work at the National Undergraduate Literature Conference in Utah, and the National Association of Chicano and Chicana Scholars Tejas Regional Foco and Gulf Coast Intercollegiate Consortium Conference, both in Houston.
In addition, Izaguirre's poetry has been published in the Rio Grande Review, The Merida Review, and Red Fez Magazine, for which he was recently named an editor.
"Lee College is a community college, but I couldn't do these things at the university level," Izaguirre said. "I've started to learn more about myself as a person. I feel more proud of who I am and where I come from, and I am happy that people are able to relate to my poems and know there is someone who has gone through the same things. People helped me change my life, and now I want to help others do the same."