Nuyorican poet and playwright Pedro Pietri was born in Ponce, Puerto Rico, and raised in Manhattan. A few years after graduating from high school, he was drafted into the Army and served in the Vietnam War. Upon his return to New York, Pietri joined the Young Lords, a Puerto Rican Civil rights activist group. In the early 1970s, he co-founded the Nuyorican Poets Café with Miguel Piñero, Miguel Algarín, and others.
He is the author of Illusions of a Revolving Door: Plays (1992), The Masses are Asses (1984), Traffic Violations (1983), Lost in the Museum of Natural History (1980), Invisible Poetry (1979), and Puerto Rican Obituary (1973), and the recorded performance poetry LPs, Loose Joints and One Is a Crowd. His work has been widely anthologized. He died in 2004.