Vanessa Angélica Villarreal is a first-generation U.S. citizen and the eldest daughter of working-class Mexican immigrants. She was born in McAllen, Texas in the Rio Grande Valley and raised in Houston, Texas. Her work centers around decolonial feminist ecopoetry and she draws on her own experience, as well as her family’s experience to explore topics of state violence, power, intimate violence, and generational trauma. Her debut collection Beast Meridian (Noemi Press, Akrilica Series, 2017) was a 2019 Kate Tufts Discovery Award finalist and winner of the John A. Robertson Award for Best First Book of Poetry from the Texas Institute of Letters. She is a Canto Mundo Fellow and is pursuing her doctorate in English Literature and Creative Writing at the University of Southern California in Los Angeles.