The Small Claim of Bones

The Small Claim of Bones

by Cindy Williams Gutierrez




Poetry. Latino/Latina Studies. Women's Studies. Latina poet Cindy Williams Gutiérrez describes a mosaic of worlds—Tenochtitlan, New Spain, and the Mexican diaspora—and takes us on a journey that explores her complex multicultural identity. A literary bridge that spans 600 years of history, these poems reflect two pivotal eras in Mexico's past through the voices of real and imagined historical figures that in turn elicit responses from the poet's contemporary voice. Three series of poems include imagined fifteenth-century Nahua "songs," irreverent sonnets and décimas in the style of Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz, and the intimate, contemporary voice of Williams Gutiérrez as she pays tribute to all that she holds dear in Mexico's diverse cultural tapestry. Through its distinctive call-and- response approach, this unique collection extends the literary dialogue of the Americas vital to US Hispanic literature, earning the poet a place in the company of the most esteemed Latina feminist writers.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781931010870
Publisher: Bilingual Review/Press
Publication date: 07/01/2014
Pages: 80
Product dimensions: 5.40(w) x 8.50(h) x 0.30(d)

About the Author

Cindy Williams Gutiérrez's poems and reviews have been published in Borderlands: Texas Poetry Review, Harvard's Journal of Feminist Studies in Religion, UNAM's Periódico de Poesía, Portland Review, Rain Taxi, and many other publications. She has performed her Aztec-inspired poetry accompanied by pre-Hispanic music at the AWP conference and at colleges and museums through Humanities Washington.

Table of Contents

Foreword ix

Acknowledgments xi

the small claim of bones 1

I The Gift 3

Deciphering the Olmec 4

Father's Memory of a Mexican Mining Camp 5

Xicochi Noconetzin, or Lullaby for My Little One 7

Here in the Northwest, Clouds 8

On a Farm Road, Crossing Texas 9

Not the Moon, but Clouds 11

Miccacuicatl, or Song for the Dead 12

If You Must Die 14

Ritual for Ash 16

Xopancuicatl, or Song of Spring 17

Opening Day at the Farmer's Market 19

Diego's Lost Sketches: Study of Mexico in Chiaroscuro 20

Yaocuicatl, or Song of War 21

This Third Thing 23

Epicurean Choice 24

Sleepwalkers 25

The Gift 27

Huehuehcuicatl, or Song of a Suddenly Ancient Man 31

II A Scattering 33

Cihuacuicatl, or Song of Women 34

The Rituals of Weavers 35

Sor Juana's Habit 38

Recasting the Story of Isaac: When the World Was under a Mother's Spell 39

A Lesson on Creation from Sor Juana Inés in the Novitiate 41

Dear Books 42

Where There's Smoke 44

a scattering of flocks 45

Sor Juana Paints Her Last Portrait 46

Interview with My Mother 47

The Persistence of Scent 49

Sor Juana on Immortality 50

tree lessons 51

Suddenly-Reconciled 52

I 53

Remembering Race 54

Epilogue 57

If I Were a Nahua Poet 58

Si yo fuera poeta nahua 59

In Tla Nehhuatl Cuicatoltecatl 60

notes 61

glossary of Nahuatl vocabulary 64

source acknowledgments 66

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