6 Ways to Support AAPI Poets During AAPI Heritage Month

As we celebrate Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) Heritage Month, it’s essential to highlight the rich tapestry of AAPI voices in poetry. AAPI poets have made significant contributions to poetry, offering unique perspectives, experiences, and insights through their verse. This May, let’s show our support and appreciation for AAPI poets in meaningful ways. Here are six simple yet impactful ways to do so.


Read and Share AAPI Poetry


One of the most direct ways to support AAPI poets is by reading and sharing their work. Take the time to explore poetry collections, anthologies, and individual poems written by AAPI authors. Share your discoveries with friends and family, and on social media platforms to amplify these voices and introduce others to their powerful narratives.


Attend AAPI Poetry Events


Look for poetry readings, book launches, and literary events featuring AAPI poets in your community or online. Attend these events to listen to their poetry firsthand, engage with the authors, and show your support. Your presence not only encourages AAPI poets but also helps create a vibrant and inclusive literary community.


To find upcoming events, check out this great list of AAPI-owned bookstores to support, or ask your local indie bookstore.


Purchase AAPI Poetry Books


Support AAPI poets financially by purchasing their poetry books. Whether you prefer physical copies or e-books, buying poetry collections directly contributes to the success and visibility of AAPI authors. Consider gifting these books to friends and loved ones to spread awareness of AAPI voices, and help foster their love for poetry.


Some great AAPI poetry collections include:

But I Don’t Feel Empowered by Suri Chan

Constellation Route by Matthew Olzmann

Gospel of a Whole Sun by Katerina Jeng

If They Come for Us by Fatimah Asghar

Obit by Victoria Chang

Oculus by Sally Wen Mao

Soft Science by Franny Choi

The Curious Thing by Sandra Lim


Follow AAPI Poets on Social Media


Many AAPI poets share their poetry, thoughts, and experiences on social media platforms like Twitter, Instagram, and TikTok. Follow these poets, engage with their content, and participate in conversations about AAPI literature and culture. By connecting with AAPI poets online, you can show your support and stay informed about their latest works and projects.


Promote AAPI Poetry Organizations


Numerous organizations and initiatives support AAPI poets and promote their work. Take the time to learn about these organizations, such as Kundiman, Kearny Street Workshop, and the Asian American Writers’ Workshop, and their efforts to uplift AAPI voices in the literary world. Consider donating to these organizations or volunteering your time to help further their missions.


Educate Yourself and Others


A crucial aspect of supporting AAPI poets is educating yourself and others about AAPI history, culture, and literature. Take the initiative to learn about the diverse experiences of AAPI communities and the contributions of AAPI poets to the literary landscape. Share your knowledge with others and advocate for the inclusion of AAPI voices in academic curricula and literary discussions.


AAPI Heritage Month provides an opportunity to celebrate and uplift the voices of AAPI poets. By reading their poetry, attending events, purchasing their books, engaging with them online, supporting relevant organizations, and educating ourselves and others, we can demonstrate our solidarity and appreciation for AAPI literature. Let’s continue to celebrate diversity, foster inclusivity, and amplify AAPI voices in poetry and beyond.