Red Hot Salsa: Bilingual Poems on Being Young and Latino in the United States

Overview

i think in spanish

i write in english

i want to go back to puerto rico,

but i wonder if my kink could live

in ponce, mayagüez and carolina

tengo las venas aculturadas

...

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Overview

i think in spanish

i write in english

i want to go back to puerto rico,

but i wonder if my kink could live

in ponce, mayagüez and carolina

tengo las venas aculturadas

escribo en spanglish

abraham in español

—from "My Graduation Speech," by Tato Laviera

A new collection of bilingual poems from the bestselling editor of Cool Salsa

Ten years after the publication of the acclaimed Cool Salsa, editor Lori Marie Carlson has brought together a stunning variety of Latino poets for a long-awaited follow-up. Established and familiar names are joined by many new young voices, and Pulitzer Prize-winning novelist Oscar Hijuelos has written the Introduction.

The poets collected here illuminate the difficulty of straddling cultures, languages, and identities. They celebrate food, family, love, and triumph. In English, Spanish, and poetic jumbles of both, they tell us who they are, where they are, and what their hopes are for the future.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Describing his unlikely path to becoming a writer, Oscar Hijuelos introduces the more than three dozen poems in the handsomely packaged paper-over-board Red Hot Salsa: Bilingual Poems on Being Young and Latino in the United States, edited by Lori Marie Carlson. In Spanish, Gary Soto offers a humorous take on the role the language plays, while Luis S. Rodriguez poses a call to action in Piece by Piece. Each poem appears completely in English and in Spanish, and a closing glossary defines the terms. (Apr.) Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.
Children's Literature
In this follow-up to Cool Salsa, Carlson has brought together not only well known poets but also student poets in this collection that illustrates the hardships of growing up in two cultures. Divided into five parts: language/identity, neighborhoods, amor, family moments-memories, and victory, each poem written in English or Spanish is translated often by the creator and these translations are right on target. The book contains an introduction by novelist Oscar Hijuelos, a glossary, and biographical notes. As usual in anthologies, some poems are much better than others, but altogether we get the feeling of what it is like growing up Latino. 2005, Random House, Ages 10 to 14.
—Maria E. Gentle
School Library Journal
Gr 8 Up-As she did in Cool Salsa (Holt, 1994), Carlson assembles another impressive forum of poetic voices. In Spanish and English, the poets speak eloquently of themselves, how and where they live, their families, and their dreams for the future. Many of them are quite well known and a number were included in the earlier book: Gary Soto, Gina Valdes, Martin Espada, and Luis J. Rodriguez, among others. In this volume, Carlson has added a few poems by students in the New York City public school system: they, too, are excellent and thought-provoking. Ivette clvarez, for example, issues a passionate plea in "Invisible Boundaries" to "go beyond the stereotypes that/lock us down and judge us." Other poems will delight readers with their delicate play of language, as in Jos Antonio Burciaga's "Bilingual Love Poem/Poema de amor bilingue," or in Tato Laviera's "My Graduation Speech," which conveys a sardonic frustration through its comic mix of languages. By turns humorous and poignant, nostalgic and immediate, these poems represent a diversity of experiences, underpinned by emotions that anyone can recognize. Once again, Oscar Hijuelos's personable, highly readable introduction sets the tone. Carlson has crafted an accessible gem of a collection, and teen readers of all backgrounds will find echoes of their own experiences in its pages.-Marilyn Taniguchi, Beverly Hills Public Library, CA Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
A decade after Cool Salsa (1994), Carlson has collected a new generation of voices. Thirty-eight poems in English and in Spanish reintroduce poets from her earlier collection (Gina Valdes, Trinidad Sanchez, Jr., Luis Rodriguez) and debut many new ones. Divided into themed sections (language, identity, neighborhoods, etc.) the poems elicit not just the particulars of people and place, but of being an adolescent. Some of the best poems play with language, much of which is sadly lost in translation (Michele Serros's imagined epitaph in "Dead Pig's Revenge": "Chicharrones Choke Chicana Child to Death (in Chino)" in Spanish just lies on the page like a dead pig). Nevertheless, the translations add an essential dimension to the book-a sense of an inclusive and diverse community-and Carlson leaves a handful of the untranslatable ones untouched, as Sacinto Cardona's "women who weep into their huiples" in "Tumbling Through My Tumbaburro." Biographical notes on the poets, and an introduction by Oscar Hijuelos round out this volume that will be appreciated by any young writer. (Poetry. 12+)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780805076165
  • Publisher: Henry Holt and Co. (BYR)
  • Publication date: 4/1/2005
  • Edition description: First Edition
  • Pages: 160
  • Sales rank: 617,406
  • Age range: 12 - 17 Years
  • Product dimensions: 5.62 (w) x 8.50 (h) x 0.62 (d)

Meet the Author

Lori Marie Carlson is an editor, translator, and novelist who has concentrated on bringing Latino literature to American audiences. She is the editor of Cool Salsa: Bilingual Poems on Growing Up Latino in the United States and of Sol a Sol: Original and Selected Bilingual Poems.

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Table of Contents

Editor's Note
Introduction
Language, idenlily
Spanish: El espanol 2
I Am from Quisquella la Bella: Soy de Quisquella la bella 8
The Hands: Las manos 10
My Shortest Food Poem: Mi poema a la comida mas corto 14
I Am Who I Am, So What: Soy como soy y que 16
My Graduation Speech 22
Invisible Boundaries: Limites invisibles 24
Neighborhoods
New in New York: Nueva en Nueva York 28
Beloved Spic: Amado Spic 30
Armitage Street: Calle Armitage 32
Life in el Barrio: La vida en el barrio 36
Leaving Ybor City: Dejando Ybor City 40
Tumbling Through My Tumbaburro 46
Calling All Chamacos! 47
Amor
Love: amor 50
Fill My World with Music: Llena mi mundo con musica 52
Your Eyes: Tus ojos 54
First Kiss: El primer beso 58
El Parpadeo: El parpadeo 60
In Virginia Woods Near Leesburg: En los bosques de Virginia cerca de Lessburg 62
Prom Poem for Jorge Barroso: Poema de baile de graduacion para Jorge Barroso 66
Upon Knowing You: Al conocerte 70
Bilingual Love Poem: Poema de amor bilingue 72
Family moments, memories
Tia Chucha: Tia Chucha 76
Martin and My Father: Martin y mi padre 82
Dead Pig's Revenge: La venganza del chancho muerto 86
At a Peach Orchard in Virginia: En una granja de duraznos en Virginia 96
The Pinata Painted with a Face Like Mine: La pinata pintada con una cara como la mia 100
Saturdays Set Within Memory: Sabado aferrado a la memoria 104
This Is for Mamacita: Esto es para mamacita 106
Victory
Triumph: El triunfo 112
In a Minute: En un minuto 114
Piece by Piece: Pedazo a pedazo 116
Ode to the Tortilla: Oda a la tortilla 118
The Journey That We Are: El viaje que somos 122
Look to the Sun: Mira al sol 124
For Bert Corona 126
Glossary 127
Biographical Notes 133
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