I am aware that much of my poetry works with recurrent themes involving place (I am always writing about my hometown— Baguio, it seems), the complicated dynamics of family, the often tangled relationships between history, time, and memory. [...]
At the same time, I am aware of the desire to make a clear and accessible connection to readers, whoever they might be, while remaining true to my heart’s first subjects and passions. The notion of a “universal audience” has about the same significance and importance to me as the arguably comparable notion of a “global citizen.” (That is to say, the construct of universality which posits that underneath all the indices of identity, history, gender, etc. which mark us, we are essentially all the same, might be useful in certain contexts, but also undeniably dangerous for its potential to conflate the details of our histories, which are singular.) But also, I cannot believe that what I write would have relevance only for an audience “just like me,” or that such an audience really and truly exists.