Luis J. Rodríguez
In 1954, Luis J. Rodríguez was born in El Paso, Texas, and grew up in
Watts and the East Los Angeles area. Involved with gangs at the age of 11, he
had lost 25 of his friends by the time he turned 18. His autobiographical
account, Always Running: La Vida Loca, Gang Days in L.A. (Curbstone,
1993), received The Carl Sandburg Award of the Friends of the Chicago Public
His books of poetry include My Nature is Hunger : New & Selected Poems, 1989-2004 (Curbstone Press, 2005); Trochemoche (1998); The Concrete River (1991), which won a PEN West/Josephine Miles
Award for Literary Excellence; and Poems Across the Pavement (1989),
which received San Francisco State University's Poetry Center Book Award.
also a journalist and critic and the founder of Tía Chucha Press, which publishes emerging, socially
conscious poets. In May 1998, Curbstone Press published his first children's book,
entitled América Is Her Name. He currently resides in California and manages the Tia Chucha Cultural Center in San Fernando.