Musings of a Future Librarian: Peluda

“Peluda” is a collection of poetry by Melissa Lozada-Oliva that discusses the author’s journey regarding her identity through an overarching theme of hair. Oliva presents her difficult position as a hairy Latina Americana via details stemming from conversations with friends and her culture. In the poet’s introductory poem, “Origin Regimen” we see the common position of Latino’s in America very clearly. Olivia writes:

 “before there were legs, bikini lines, eyebrows, upper lips,underarms, forearms, labias, assholes, chins,or the waxing table there were houses & two immigrants who cleaned them (ll 1-4).” 

The latter portion, “two immigrants who cleaned them”  highlights the reality that many Latinos within the United States hold service or labor jobs.  In the same breath Olivia is introducing the stigma around female hair. By naming all these places in which women get waxed, the poet is directing us to analyze why we feel it is so necessary to tame our hair. In her poem, “My Hair Stays on Your Pillow Like a Question Mark” Olivia again presents the issues through intersectionality via the speaker’s conversation with her white friends. She tells us:

Continue reading