Joshua Jennifer Espinoza

(1987 - Present)

Poet Joshua Jennifer Espinoza is a trans woman from Riverside, California. Encouraged by her parents to follow her creative leanings, she wrote stories as a child before discovering Langston Hughes in middle school and turning to poetry. The blog culture of the 2000s-era internet was an important space for the young poet in sharing and developing her writing.

Written in a raw, confessional style, Espinoza’s poetry explores topics including the body, beauty and desire, trauma and mental illness, and trans identity. Her work has appeared in Poetry, Denver Quarterly, American Poetry Review, Poem-a-Day, Lambda Literary, PEN America, The Feminist Wire, The Offing, and elsewhere. Her first chapbook, i'm alive / it hurts / i love it, was published by Boost House in 2013 and released in a second edition by Big Lucks Books in 2019. Her subsequent collections are THERE SHOULD BE FLOWERS, published by Civil Coping Mechanisms in 2016, and Outside of the Body There Is Something like Hope (Big Lucks, 2018). Espinoza is currently an MFA candidate in poetry at University of California, Riverside.