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Pity the Drowned Horses
by Sheryl Luna
Pity the Drowned Horses is the winner of the first Andres Montoya Poetry Prize. This collection is about place and many of the poems in it are set in the desert southwest on the U.S./Mexico border in El Paso, Texas. Sheryl Luna’s poems are also about family and home within the broader context of the border as both a bridge and a barrier. They deal with the bilingual and bi ...more
Paperback, 88 pages
Published February 15th 2005 by University of Notre Dame Press
(first published 2005)
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The author writes about growing up in the borderlands of the southwest and other topics. A wide range of emotions and images are in this collection of poems. You don't need your secret poetry decoder ring to appreciate these poems. Many wonderful scenes are described in an intimate way. No indulgence in the excess of sentimentality, rage, or an ideological agenda either. Bones, a portrait of older women is one of my favorites.
Luna is a poet who sees with the unflinching eye of a fearless fiction writer. Only these poems aren't make-believe... they are real, relentlessly real, and they spring from a real place that has been seared indelibly into the poet's memory and soul: the Chicano/a borderlands of El Paso, Texas. Luna writes about this sun-beaten, dusty geography, about its poverty and hardness, and most of all about the men and women who struggle to live in it, who wrestle daily with its unforgiving physical and ...more
What I like about Luna's work is that concrete images matter in her poetry and she adheres to the traditionalist poetry school of thought. She is a great under appreciated talent and considering the road she has traveled which is to say the streets of El Paso where not many get a high school education, much less a college degree, Sheryl’s talent and schooling speak volumes.