Tomas Morin’s new collection Machete addresses some of the concerns of life as a Mexican American in his home state of Texas. It is infused more generally with a fresh and zany take on the diversity of our culture, bringing together seemingly disparate scraps of history, geography, ideology, and sensibility—as here, where we find Willie Mays, Marx, moon shot, and a bit of miracle. In these poems, culture crashes like waves and leaves behind Billie Holiday and the CIA, disco balls and Dante, the Bible and Jerry Maguire. They are long, lean, and dazzle in their telling.
In the tradition of women as the unsung keepers of history, Deborah Paredez’s second poetry collection, Year of the Dog, tells her story as a Latina daughter of the Vietnam War.The title refers to the year 1970―the “year of the Metal Dog” in the lunar calendar―which was the year of the author’s birth, the year her father prepared to deploy to Vietnam along with many other Mexican-American immigrant soldiers, and a year of tremendous upheaval across the United States.