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Iliana Rocha

Iliana Rocha

Iliana Rocha

Assistant Professor

217 McClung Tower
Website • Twitter


Iliana Rocha is the 2019 winner of the Berkshire Prize for a First or Second Book of Poetry for her newest collection, The Many Deaths of Inocencio Rodriguez, forthcoming from Tupelo Press. Karankawa, her debut, won the 2014 AWP Donald Hall Prize for Poetry (University of Pittsburgh Press, 2015). The recipient of a 2020 CantoMundo fellowship and 2019 MacDowell Colony fellowship, she has had work featured in the Best New Poets 2014 anthology, as well as The NationVirginia Quarterly Review, Latin American Literature TodayRHINOBlackbird, and West Branch, among others,and sheserves as Poetry Co-Editor for Waxwing Literary Journal. She earned her PhD in Literature and Creative Writing from Western Michigan, and her areas of specialty are Chicanx and Latinx poetics, critical race theory, and queer and feminist rhetoric. Her three chihuahuas Nilla, Beans, and Migo are the loves of her life.


  • PhD, Western Michigan University
  • MFA, Arizona State University
  • BA, University of Houston



  • The Many Deaths of Inocencio Rodriguez (Tupelo Press, 2022)
  • Karankawa (University of Pittsburgh Press, 2015)

Poems in Periodicals

Essays and Creative Nonfiction
“Ghost Story” and “Love Story,” forthcoming in Grist
“Selena Cover Band,” forthcoming in Selena Anthology 
“‘Just Like Heaven,’ The Cure” inColdfront Magazine‘s Poets off Poetry: Song of the Week Series

Awards, Honors, and Grants

  • 2020 CantoMundo Fellow
  • The Many Deaths of Inocencio, winner, 2019 Berkshire Prize for a First or Second Book of Poetry
  • 2019 MacDowell Colony Fellow
  • Karankawa, winner of 2016 Society of Midland Authors Award for Poetry
  • Karankawa, winner, 2014 AWP Donald Hall Prize for Poetry