XI: A Collection of Poetry on Being Human


Poetry - Inspirational
150 Pages
Reviewed on 06/20/2020
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Author Biography

Andrew Joseph Zaragoza, Jr is a Chicano born and raised among the Greater Los Angeles gateway cities. Having grown up in and now employed at the ABC Unified School District, he spends his time teaching students to become their best selves. He concurrently works with adults at private residential locations as a Residential Counselor. He recently acquired a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology at California State University, Dominguez Hills with plans for post-baccalaureate work.
While growing up, Andrew has become a model to the young minds by inspiring them to achieve their unique and individual greatness. Having persevered through hardships and loss at a young age himself, he found comfort in visual arts and music. Having formal education through several high school art classes, self-taught knowledge, and past experience with the Downtown Art Walk in Los Angeles, he now ventures out to help others through education and activism.
Much of his artistic inspirations come from his grandmother, who first introduced him to a wide variety of media at a young age. With her passing in 2009, he looked to his parents for support and direction about how to proceed with his skills and development.
Further, he draws his aspirations from the wide variety of musical artists, Salvador Dali, Seurat, Morley, and more. His style is one of continuous growth and up to the audience’s interpretation. He describes himself as the fluid that fills up the audience’s containers, liquid and always moving.

    Book Review

Reviewed by Tammy Ruggles for Readers' Favorite

XI: A Collection of Poetry on Being Human by Andrew Zaragoza will inspire you to find meaning in your own life. This poet draws from his real-life experiences of confusion, adversity, imagination, family, friendship, dating, determination, art, music, and much more, to help his readers. Zaragoza isn't shy about describing what his life was like, and it takes courage to open up your soul so that others can learn from it, and perhaps heal from it too. A lot of poetry is highly abstract and difficult to grasp--especially subjective poetry. But this poet writes in a personal way about things most of us can relate to--some of the poems are straightforward in simple language; others lyrical, empathetic, and literary--but all very accessible. His poem about gold is one of my favorites in this collection.

In a way, this book of poetry has the intimacy of someone writing you a personal letter or speaking to you on the phone or across a drink in a coffee shop. The writer isn't trying to go over your head--he's actually trying to tell you something special and inspiring about his life that you can use in your own life. If you've ever felt alone in a situation or felt like no one understands or can relate, this book of poetry shows the similarities we humans share. Besides poems, there are questions about the poems to reflect on at the end. As you read along through each poem, you get the feeling this poet knows he needs to share his gift with others, and help others with it. If you can call poetry therapeutic--and some believe it is--XI: A Collection of Poetry on Being Human by Andrew Zaragoza is one volume of poetry you'll want to keep on hand in good times and in bad.