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The Zen of La Llorona
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The Zen of La Llorona

4.48 of 5 stars 4.48  ·  rating details  ·  21 ratings  ·  6 reviews
The Zen of La Llorona is a second collection of poetry by a Native American woman, and as such, it goes beyond initial concerns with personal racial identity. While still very much speaking from an indigenous point of view, The Zen of La Llorona complicates that indigenous identity with visceral explorations of gendered violence, sexual orientation and mothering in an unpr...more
Paperback, 106 pages
Published April 1st 2005 by Salt Publishing
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Greta Roussos
Enjoyed hearing most of these poems out loud, some too graphic for dream time, but most were at worst interesting and at best deeply touching.
"The Mexican folktale of La Llorona, sometimes known as the ‘weeping woman’ tells a story of infanticide as a lineage of violence is passed down from the conquering Spanish conquistador to the oppressed Mexican woman who must father his child. The power of this story filters into two new poetry collections: Deborah Miranda’s The Zen of La Llorona and Pascale Petit’s The Huntress.

The Zen of La Llorona begins in the voice of La Llorona’s child. In ‘Three Months Without Electricity’, the daughter s...more
Rereading this powerful collection again this week. It's one of my all-time favorites.

The introduction is an important reflection on the effects of colonization and patriarchy on creativity.

The poems themselves? Divine. Moving. Goosebump-giving.

This passage from the poem "Forty" arrested me today:

Some mysteries are good.
Some mysteries hide like little moons
behind a belt of asteroids
or in the shadow of something greater.
And some mysteries
we can't know--
aren't ours to know.

And I forgot ho...more
The intimacy of some of these poems, particularly those dealing with her mother's death and her lover's body and sexual prowess, is almost embarrassing. I say almost because the artistry saves them from being merely exhibitionist or, if I may say so, merely subjective. They are deeply personal of course, in ways that sex and death inevitably are, but dealing with the personal in a way that transcends the ego and connects the experiences with the personal lives of the many readers in an immediate...more
i really enjoyed how this book journeyed and each section built on the last. found that some of Miranda's poems were stronger than others. it was a huge relief to read all of them though, felt like something i've needed to do for a long time, from before she even wrote them!
May 02, 2010 Qwo-Li rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: NDNz, queer folks, survivors, poets, everyone
There are some poets and books that I return to again and again in order to survive. This book is one of them. Every page offers gifts of words to us, whispers resistance and survival and loss and healing in our ears. Miranda's work should be read again and again and again.
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