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ISBN: 978-1-955239-52-3
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Categories Nomadic, Poetry

All Women Are Born Wailing

Publication Date: April 2023


In June of 2023, Black Lawrence Press welcomed numerous existing and forthcoming Nomadic Press titles to our catalogue. All Women Are Born Wailing was originally published by Nomadic.

Nen G Ramirez’s All Women Are Born Wailing confronts myriad forms of violence against Latinas. Drawing on personal and family experiences with mental illness, the poet challenges the “crazy Latina” stereotype and examines the ways it has been used to belittle and dehumanize people who deserve treatment and care. Unflinching in their critique of sexist and racist tropes, in these poems Ramirez experiments with persona and familial history, including the murder of a cousin, in order to imagine more hopeful futures.


Ramirez’s debut is sparse but razor-sharp, every gentle line disguising the poem’s feral snarl; for every description of a sea that “shimmers like glass / shattered out of windshields,” there are also the “chewed up hoodie strings / crystallized with spit.” Their work dances through the blurry space of persona, entwining rage and elegy, reveling in the aesthetics of self-destruction and rot even while it resists them. It’s rare to find a poet who holds their speaker—a younger self—with this level of kindness and grace, even in their worst moments. And despite all the pain these poems hold, there is a biting wit that threads its way through the collection, never letting us forget that punch is the first half of “punchline.”

torrin a. greathouse, author of Wound from the Mouth of a Wound

All Women Are Born Wailing is filled with shards of violence woven with threads of memorable beauty. Ramirez’s writing evokes a deep, familiar pain in poems that are original and profound. This is the kind of collection you will wish to slowly savor but can’t help devouring. A collection meant to be read and reread and recommended to everyone you know.
Shannon McLeod, author of Whimsy and Nature Trail Stories

All Women Are Born Wailing is an anthology of infinite nuance. It’s heartbreaking. It’s witty. It’s
endearing. It’s scathing. It’s youthful. It’s thousands of years in the making. The only thing more impressive than its gradation is its consistency. Every poem is a knockout. There are lines from it that will stick with me for decades. I had to read the entire thing standing up.

Nen Ramirez can say a thousand words with just a few. One of the truly great poetic voices of
our generation.
Kyle Prue, writer/creator/producer of the mini-series, Rabbit; author of The Feud trilogy

Poems like running red lights, like lightning held long after it strikes, like fire to harrow memory;
this, and much more, you’ll find in Nen G Ramirez’s All Women Are Born Wailing, a
magnificent collection that is at once intimate and universal, provocative and celebratory,
unafraid to raise a verbal fist against the monsters of cultural stereotypes and expectations.
Read these poems, for they’ll reassure you that sometimes to keep on living you have to
“outrun [your] blood,” you have to “outlive [your] weeping name.” And sometimes, this is all
that matters.
Octavio Quintanilla , San Antonio Poet Laureate 2018-2020, author of If I Go Missing

About the Author

© Zach Oren

Nen G Ramirez

Nen G Ramirez is a Chicanx writer from Adrian, Michigan. They received their MFA in poetry from the University of Minnesota. You can find their work in Acentos Review, Split Lip Magazine, Poetry Magazine, and elsewhere.

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