Achiote: a shrub or small tree indigenous to Central and South America. Introduced to the Pacific and Asia by the Spanish in the 17th century, Achiote now has firm transnational roots. Achiote produces pink flowers and red spiny seed pods. People have used the seeds as a dye for clothing, arts and crafts, as body paint in times of war and celebration, as spice and coloring for food. Other parts of the Achiote tree have been used to make various medicinal remedies for sunstroke, burns, fever, sore throat, blood disease, eye and ear infections, and hypertension. Achiote has also been used as an aphrodisiac. We named our press after the Achiote tree because we believe poetry has the very same powers to enrich our surroundings, inspire our passions, enhance our senses, and heal our wounds.
To us, Achiote represents the unrepresentable, transnational, migratory, and adaptive. Achiote Press asks what it means to bear witness, to use adaptation as resistance, to cross borders, to map ourselves onto a dislocated world, to speak in exile, and to suffer diasporic hunger.
Achiote Press was founded in 2006. We publish prose, poetry, nonfiction, art, translations, and cross-genre projects created by authors from diverse cultural and aesthetic backgrounds. We also publish in a variety of formats, including chapbooks, perfect-bound books, and anthologies.
We are not currently reading manuscripts. Please query if you would like us to consider your poetry or your artwork for a future issue.
Achiote Press is located in El Cerrito, California.
Jennifer Reimer, Editor
Jason Buchholz, Editor & Art Director