Photo courtesy of the artist

Irene Suico Soriano



Artist’s Quote

You belong to tribes of warriors and outlaws…


As I sit here by your bed looking at your sleeping body,


I wonder how long your fury can sustain you.


Suico Soriano, Irene. “Months.” Primates from an Archipelago: Poems. Vancouver: Rabbit Fool Press, 2017

Luminary’s Quote

When my brother fell


I picked up the weapons


and never once questioned


whether I could carry


the weight and grief,


the responsibility he shouldered.


I never questioned


whether I could aim


or be as precise as he.


– Essex Hemphill


Hemphill, Essex. “When My Brother Fell.” Ceremonies: Prose and Poetry, New York: Plume, 1992.


Born in Zamboanga, Philippines in 1969, poet, independent literary & film curator and activist Irene Suico Soriano immigrated to the US in 1981. Irene is the author of the poetry collection, Primates from an Archipelago (Rabbit Fool Press, 2017). A recipient of the PEN America Emerging Voices Fellowship, her poems have appeared in The Philippines Free Press, Clamour dyke zine, Maganda’s Eleben queer issue and Traffic Report.


Irene founded LA’s first Asian Pacific American literary reading series “Wrestling Tigers” at the Japanese American National Museum, coordinating the series from 1994-1998. She was featured in the LA Times in 2000 for her role in co-curating the NEA funded “World Beyond Poetry Festival” that featured over 100+ poets from the diverse communities of Los Angeles. Irene has coordinated literary events for the Festival of Philippines Arts and Culture, Getty Center, LitFest Pasadena and LAMBDA LitFest. She has also curated film programs for the Echo Park Film Center, Filipino American National Historical Society and has served in film festival shorts programming committees including the Los Angeles Asian Pacific Film Festival, Film Independent and Outfest.


Irene will be the Artist/Activist-in-Residence at Pitzer College’s Intercollegiate Department of Asian American Studies in the Fall of 2021.