Jacob Benavides

Jacob Benavides We are excited to spotlight Limb LoveMorningand The Exhibitionist by friend and recently graduated Islander, Jacob Benavides.

They graduated in 2022 from TAMUCC with a Bachelors in English: Literary studies, and minors in both Studio Art and Women, Gender & Sexuality Studies; they will be attending the Oklahoma State University MFA program in the fall, with a concentration in poetry. When asked, “Why do you write?” Jacob responded, “I write because, I have to…its a way to make vocabulary known, a way to discover who I am, and what… I write as An exploration, sharing of views, and therapy. A throwing up of emotions. Jacob Benavides uses visceral imagery of bodily tears, injuries, and ailments to communicate and express how their emotions shoot through them and create torrents of synaptic responses; the word built always clouds my mind causing me to cringe and relax simultaneously. They have been published in Vol. 19 of The Windward Review, Texas Poetry Assignment and is soon to be published in the Heartland Review. Jacob can be found @jabejohnson on Instagram where they have poems, art, and published works highlighted on their page.

Review of work from Vol. 19 (2021): Empathy and Entropy

Limb Love and The Exhibitionist explore love and the subsequent pain or misgivings that can often follow a pull on the heartstrings. Limb Love uses the experience of a repeated injury as an allegory to seemingly endless possibilties: the adolescence experience of love, broken dreams, relapse, traumatic experiences, etc. the list goes on. Their work operates in an enjoyable space where the reader can get out of it whatever applies closest to them or whatever they’re looking for. The second poem, Morning, perfectly bisects the two poems with a flair of alliteration and rhyming imagery that bounces from word to word, and reminds us all how similarly our caffeine ridden mornings often begin. (Just me, okay carry on.) It’s a very fun poem that works as a palate cleanser between Jacob’s two dense, emotional pieces. The last featured piece, The Exhibitionist, twists and turns to show and reveal more of itself, following each perusing of the lines and each hopping to the next stanza. After each leap of faith you hope you chose wisely despite an incorrect choice being impossible. The poem isShoots and Ladders of the mind where you can surmise whatever you fancy with a catharsis welling up no matter what.