A new episode of theÂ New Books in Poetry podcast is up. I had a riveting conversation with Roy G. GuzmÃ¡n about their new book Catrachos (Graywolf Press).
GuzmÃ¡nâ€™s Catrachos is a stunning debut collection of poetry that immerses the reader in rich, vibrant language. Described as being â€œpart immigration narrative, part elegy, and part queer coming-of-age story,â€ this powerful collection blends pop culture, humor, with GuzmÃ¡nâ€™s cultural experience to explore life, death, and borders both real and imaginary.
â€œThis isnâ€™t supposed to be a history book, and yet it is,â€ says GuzmÃ¡n in discussing Catrachos, explaining that the book isÂ not supposed to be anthropology, sociology, or a testimonial either, and yet it is. â€œThose are the contradictions, especially when youâ€™re a marginalized writer, your words are always operating on so many different frequencies at once.â€
Here’s a sample of GuzmÃ¡n’s writing from the book:
â€œIt is not a fallacy that the pulperÃa owner who wakes up
dressed in a tunic of warriorsâ€™ pelos, or the milkman
pressing his rough hands against the cowâ€™s tectonic body,
remembers the skirted boy with an ovarian lipstick for a tongue,
the boy who offered a tenth of his knees to the teeth
of a country with dentures.â€
â€” from â€œFinding Logic in a Crushed Headâ€
You can listen to the interviewÂ hereÂ or on the podcast app of your choice.
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