Vanessa Angélica Villarreal is a poet, essayist, and artist born in the borderlands in McAllen, Texas. She is the author of the poetry collection Beast Meridian. She is the recipient of a 2019 Whiting Award, a 2018 Texas Institute of Letters Poetry Prize, and a 2019 Kate Tufts Discovery Award finalist. Her work appears or is forthcoming in the New York Times, Poetry Magazine, BuzzFeed, The Boston Review, The Rumpus, and elsewhere. She is a CantoMundo Fellow and is currently pursuing her doctorate in English Literature and Creative Writing at USC.