The Horror Zine
The Horror Zine Review

Unleash Your Inner Chupacabra

A poetry anthology by the members of

The San Angelo Writers' Club

You can buy this book for only $5 HERE

Unleash Your Inner Chupacabra

Unleash Your Inner Chupacabra

Edited by Dr. Malia A. Perez and Juan Manuel Perez

Review by Jean Jones

Unleash Your Inner Chupacabra is a “poetry anthology” by the members of the San Angelo Writers’ Club, and was edited by award winning poet Juan Manuel Perez and photographer/writer, Dr. Malia Perez.

According to the anthology, when describing the Chupacabra, it states “the mythological description has it bearing vampire teeth, long spikes or horns from the top of its head down its spine, with either green or gray, scaly skin with glowing, red eyes.”

The rest of the anthology goes on to describe it with more or less different details. That should not be surprising because according to Carol Smith, writer and poet, “He can be what we make him. No two encyclopedias will be in complete agreement.”

True, but as it has been said, “the devil is in the details.” Some of the details I enjoyed very much, including this nice piece by Tom Brady:

La Chupacabra
Lusted for the farmer’s soul
It was delicious.

Most of the poems in this book remind me of Wallace Stevens’ 13 Ways of looking at a Blackbird. They have the same, Zen-like quality.

Some of the poems have an almost haiku-like effect, such as “Who Will Be Next,” by Judie Oberheuser:

Chupacabra screech
Strikes terror in all who hear
Another life gone

Others have an almost whimsical tone such as this one by Juan Perez that compares the obsessions of H.P Lovecraft with his own:

Lovecraft has Cthulhu
Stoker, his Dracula
Shelley has her Frankenstein
Perez, his Chupacabra

Some of the poems strive for outright horror like this one by Judie Oberheuser which I thought sounded and smelled quite horrific:

Reptilian creature
Eyes aglow unusual red
Three to four feet high
Sharp spines running down his back
Hiss and screech sulfuric stench

As Juan Manuel Perez mentioned, “El chupacabra is whatever you want to believe it is. El chupacabra has become the epitome of the Latino bestiary as much as Bigfoot or the Jersey Devil is to Americana.” I agree.

And then there are references to eyes, showing character and insight such as these last two lines
from “I, Chupacabra” by Juan Perez:

I, chupacabra
Staring back with vengeance

Kip Piper also focuses on eyes in this one:

From the closet dark
Two, white, burning orbs appear.
Chupacabra eyes.

It’s the eyes that leave you as you finish this book about the Bigfoot of Latin America, this stranger at the end of the horizon, just beyond the streetlight…watching. It’s enough to make you want to read this poetry anthology from cover to cover.
















Edited by Dr. Malia A. Perez and Juan Manuel Perez

About Juan Perez

Juan Perez3

Juan Manuel Perez, a Mexican-American/Texas poet of indigenous descent (Purapecha/Otomi), is the author of Another Menudo Sunday (2007), the e-book O’ Dark Heaven: A Response To Suzette Haden Elgin’s Definition Of Horror (2009), and WUI: Written Under The Influence Of Trinidad Sanchez, Jr. (2011), plus six poetry chapbooks.

He is also a member of the San Antonio Poets’ Association, the Poetry Society Of Texas, the San Angelo Writers’ Club, the Horror Writers Association, the Alamo Area Poets Of Texas, the Writers Of The Rio Grande, Texas Association of Creative Writing Teachers, and the Gulf Coast Poets.

Juan is the 2011-2012 Poet Laureate for the San Antonio Poets’ Association. He is also known as the Original Chupacabrista (a poet writing heavily about the legend, myth and lore of the mysterious “Chupacabra”) and has been called a true Poet Of The Southwest. 

He has been a featured reader at numerous poetry venues around the Lone Star State alongside the state’s finest, the Poet Laureates of Texas, as well as out of state, with the Poet Laureates of Oklahoma, including a festival that featured the new, United States Poet Laureate, Natasha Threthewey. He has also been a featured poet in the states of Georgia and New Mexico and will be featured in Ohio and Alabama next year, with a possibility of reading in New York in 2013. As is apparent, he is available for readings in and out of his birth-state.

Juan writes poetry on a variety of subjects like Mexican-American/Native American life, comic books, science fiction, horror, food, and the elusive chupacabra. He is also the creator and owner of the HOUSE OF THE FIGHTING CHUPACABRAS, an independent small-press that has already released the chapbook, “Unleash Your Inner Chupacabra: A Poetry Anthology By The Members Of The San Angelo Writers’ Club” (Fall 2012), with two more projects to come in 2013.

Juan is a ten-year Navy/Marine veteran and former Combat medic (Hospital Corpsman) serving in the First Gulf War (1991). Presently, he is a successful public high school history teacher in La Pryor, Texas where he lives.

About the reviewer

Jean Jones

Jean Jones

Jean Arthur Jones is an award-winning American poet and an editor. Jean Jones is co-editor with Bruce Whealton for the online magazine Word Salad Poetry Magazine. Jean lives in the Wilmington, Cape Fear North Carolina area. Jean Jones attended St. Andrews Presbyterian College and received his B.A. in English from the University of North Carolina Wilmington. He later went on to receive an M.F.A. degree in creative writing from Bowling Green State University.  Jean currently teaches Basic Skills at Cape Fear Community College in Wilmington, North Carolina. He has had two books of poetry published by St. Andrews Press from St Andrews College, North Carolina; the most recent, Birds of Djakarta, was released in 2008. He has been published in The Horror Zine, ditch, the poetry that matters, West End Poets News Letter, and Aphelion among others.