Camino del Sol: Fifteen Years on Latina and Latino Writing

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Since 1994, the Camino del Sol series has been one of the premier vehicles for Latina/o literary voices. Launched under the auspices of Chicana/o luminary Ray Gonzalez, it quickly established itself in both the Latina/o community and the publishing world as it garnered awards for its outstanding writing.

Featuring both established writers and first-time authors, Camino del Sol has published poetry and prose that convey something about the Latina/o experience—works that tap into universal truths through a distinct cultural lens. This volume celebrates fifteen years of books by bringing together some of the series’ best work, such as poetry from Francisco X. Alarcón, fiction from Christine Granados, and nonfiction from Luis Alberto Urrea. These voices echo the entire spectrum of Latina/o writing, from Chicana/o to Puerto Rican to Brazilian-American, and take in themes ranging from migration to gender.

Awards bestowed upon Camino del Sol titles include the PEN/Beyond Margins Award to Richard Blanco’s Directions to the Beach of the Dead; Before Columbus Foundation American Book Awards to Diana García’s When Living Was a Labor Camp and Luis Alberto Urrea’s Nobody’s Son; International Latino Book Awards to Pat Mora’s Adobe Odes and Kathleen Alcalá’s The Desert Remembers My Name; the Premio Aztlán literary prize to Sergio Troncoso’s The Last Tortilla; and the PEN Oakland-Josephine Miles National Literary Award to Kathleen de Azevedo’s Samba Dreamers. All of these works are represented in this outstanding collection.

In a short span of time, Camino del Sol has cultivated an admirable and sizeable list of distinguished contemporary authors—and even garnered the first National Book Critics Circle Award for a Chicana/o for Juan Felipe Herrera’s Half of the World in Light. Camino del Sol: Fifteen Years of Latina and Latino Writing is a benchmark for the series and a wonderful introduction to the world of Latina/o literature.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"A strong and growing presence in Latino literature." —Publishers Weekly

"A major vehicle for Latina and Latino literary voices." —The Sunday Journal

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780816528134
  • Publisher: University of Arizona Press
  • Publication date: 5/15/2010
  • Series: Camino del Sol Series
  • Pages: 368
  • Product dimensions: 5.90 (w) x 8.90 (h) x 0.90 (d)

Meet the Author

Writer, poet, teacher, and critic Rigoberto González is the author of several books including Butterfly Boy, winner of the 2007 American Book Award, and most recently the short story collection Men Without Bliss.

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Table of Contents

Camino del Sol Lighting a Path for Chicano/Latino Literature in the New Millennium 1


From the Other Side of Night/Del otro lado de la noche Francisco X. Alarcón

Del otro lado de la noche/From the Other Side of Night 19

Plegaria de amor/Love Plea 20

¡Tlazoltéotl! 21

Tlazolteotl! 22

Oración del desierto/Desert Prayer 23

Home Movies of Narcissus Rane Arroyo

Amateur Filmmaker 24

People of the Piñata 26

That Flag 27

Directions to the Beach of the Dead Richard Blanco

When I Was a Little Cuban Boy 28

Translation for Mamá 29

In the City of Smoking Mirrors Albino Carrillo

H. Writes to His Brother to Assure Him of Continuous Comfort in the Afterlife 31

Animal Time 32

El Espejo Fumeroso 33

In an Angry Season Lisa D. Chávez

The Conjuror of the New Century 34

The Tattoo Artist 36

The Bad Wife 38

A Rush of Hands Juan Delgado

Shrine 40

Backyard 41

Nido 43

Work Done Right David Domínguez

Chilalengua 44

Club Las Palmas 45

Pig 46

The Tovar Bull 47

A Question of Gravity and Light Blas Falconer

To Know You Better 49

This 50

Letter from the Cumberland 50

Epilogue 51

The Keepsake Storm Gina Franco

Darkling 51

The Walk Like Old Habits 53

Where the Bodies, Half-Dressed, in Pieces 54

When Living Was a Labor Camp Diana Garcia

When living was a labor camp called Montgomery 56

Softball and Tomato Fields 57

Operation Wetback, 1953 58

POEMA Maurice Kilwein Guevara

Lyric 59

At the Podium 60

What Baby Gertrude Heard 61

border-crosser with a lamborghini dream Juan Felipe Herrera

blood night café 63

selena in corpus christi lacquer red 64

Giraffe on Fire

Ofelia in Manhattan, Circa 1943 65

Notebooks of a Chile Verde Smuggler

Immigrant Fortune Teller Machine 69

Fuzzy Equations 74

Letanía para José Antonio Burciaga 75

Marlene Dietrich, Rita Hayworth, & My Mother Rita Maria Magdaleno

Salzbergwerk: The Salt Mines Tour 78

Cue Lazarus Carl Marcum

Light Show 80

A Prayer for My Brother 81

Breathing Between the Lines Demetria Martínez

Discovering America 82

The Devil's Workshop

Remedios 85

Class Action 86

World to World Valerie Martínez

Heritage 87

World to World 88

Bowl 88

Wish 89

How Long She'll Last in This World María Meléndez

Backcountry, Emigrant Gap 91

In Biruté's Camp 91

Why Can't We All Just Get Along? 92

Adobe Odes Pat Mora

Ode to Readers 96

Ode to a Book 97

Ode to El Paso 98

Ode to Women 101

Blood Mysteries Dixie Salazar

Piñión Nuts 103

Why I'm Not Someone Else 105

Elegy for Desire Luis Omar Salinas

The Luxury of Darkness 107

The Disappearance of My Wife 108

Elegy for Desire 108

Palm Crows Virgil Suárez

Animalia 111

El exilio 115

Margo Tamez

Naked Wanting

First Choice 117

For Keeps 118

What i'm on Luis Humberto Valadez

dear reader: this is what i thought on easter day 120

Section 7 121

radio 122

esau past love 123

on Tuesday, when the homeless disappeared Marcos McPeek Villatoro

The Deer 124

El Salvador, 1932-1981 128


excerpt from The Region of Lost Names Fred Arroyo 135

excerpt from Samba Dreamers Kathleen de Azevedo 146

excerpt from If I Die in Juarez Stella Pope Duarte 159

Brides and Sinners in El Chuco Christine Granados

A Scenic Night 178

Small Time 186

Inner View 193

Snapping Lines Jack Lopez

La Luz 201

Lost 213

El Milagro and Other Stories Patricia Preciado Martin

La Tortillera/The Tortilla Maker 219

Amor Eterno: Eleven Lessons in Love

Amor Desesperado/Desperate Love 223

The Truth about Alicia and Other Stories Ana Consuelo Matiella

The Ring 228

El Bebé del Vaquerón 233

excerpt from The Peruvian Notebooks Braulio Muñoz 235

The Last Tortilla and Other Stories Sergio Troncoso

The Snake 244

Punching Chickens 255


Of Earth and Sea: A Chilean Memoir Marjorie Agosín

Words 269

Violeta Parra 270

November 1, The Day of the Dead 271

Nights of Exile 272

And Finally, Returning 273

The Illusion of a Firefly 273

The Desert Remembers My Name: On Family and Writing Kathleen J. Alcalá

My Week as a Mexican 274

Found in Translation 278

The Woman Who Loved Water 283

The Underground Heart: A Return to a Hidden Landscape Ray Gonzalez

The Border Is Open 295

Renaming the Earth: Personal Essays

excerpts from A Different Border 305

nobody's son: notes from an american life Luis Alberto Urrea

Nobody's Son 321

Source Credits 335

About the Editor 337

About the Contributors 339

Bibliography 347

Index of Authors 351

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