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Lima :: Limón

4.44  ·  Rating details ·  154 ratings  ·  20 reviews
In her striking second collection, Natalie Scenters-Zapico sets her unflinching gaze once again on the borders of things. Lima :: Limón illuminates both the sweet and the sour of the immigrant experience, of life as a woman in the U.S. and Mexico, and of the politics of the present day. Drawing inspiration from the music of her childhood, her lyrical poems focus on the ...more
Paperback, 80 pages
Published May 21st 2019 by Copper Canyon Press (first published May 14th 2019)
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Dec 23, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: poetry
These poems are unflinchingly brutal, a mirror to the violence that the author aims to portray.

Tackling themes of gendered violence in latinx communities, Lima :: Limón is a case study of women and girls experiences growing up in a sexist society, where machismo is inherited and taught to both boys and girls as stereotypes to follow to the letter: girls should be pure, the perfected mirrored image of Virgin Mary (“I / want to correct all that prevents me from becoming divine, appear to every man
Adriana Martinez Figueroa
i need to like. lay down for a while. goddamn.
In an exploration of womanhood, and the ugliness that exists within that concept, Natalie Scenters-Zapico delivers a collection that is at once defiant and real. The sophomore poet explores not just womanhood, but the binary in which girls and women reside in, never allowed to live in the area between girlhood and womanhood.

The author’s usage of nursery rhymes brings back memories of childhood games and the notion of innocence, defying the
Emily Polson
Dec 20, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: poetry, arc, spanglish
I think I need to sit with this for a while before I write a review, but wow. This was excellent.

[I received a review copy from the publisher via Edelweiss.]
May 21, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Blown away by Natalie Scenters-Zapico’s use of words and images. She writes with such brutal, daring, and tender honesty. I am going to revisit this collection as much as I revisit her first collection.

Excerpt from poem “You Are a Dark Body”

“ A man / lies down in bed next to you. He swallows your dark body / of water & gives you a woman’s body, a body you’ve never known ./ As a woman, you receive sores from him & through/ the sores you breaths & despite the sores you give birth /
Brenna Gomez
Nov 29, 2019 rated it really liked it
An intense and beautiful collection on gender and violence on both sides of the border. The examination of machismo and marianismo was refreshing to see, especially as a Latina reading this book. Silence is so present in gendered violence, but these poems say the difficult things even as the speaker in the poems makes difficult choices as all women in violent relationships do. I appreciated that characters in the poems always remind the speaker that she could have it worse: she could be a ...more
In a forceful, fierce, lyrical collection of borderlands poetry, Natalie Scenters-Zapico interrogates place, identity, womanhood, and meanings and constructions of masculinity, or, in one of several titles to appear more than once, Macho :: Hembra. The exploration is often brutal, unstinting in its depiction of violence and grief. Threads of magic run alongside the violence, and every poem is a defiance, a refusal to cede voice to those with power.

Lima :: Limón is fierce and unstinting, a
Brandon Amico
Oct 02, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Holy cow. This is one of the most scorching, powerful books of poetry I’ve read in awhile, and I already know it’s one I’m going to return to often. Poems of violence, gender, hope, anger, borders, cruelty and tenderness—here is the violence we do to each other laid out for us to reckon with.

Scenters-Zapico has such a talent for imagery and language that at once gently unsettles you at the same time it blasts you out of your seat. That is to say, you may return to where you were sitting before
Sep 20, 2019 rated it really liked it
I enjoyed this collection of poetry that delves into the subjects of womanhood, gender, and cultural identity.

Though I read the ARC, I purchased the audiobook after it was published and listened to that as well. I enjoyed the book more than the audio. The narrator's heavily accented Spanish distracted me from the poems themselves.

I can't separate the two experiences and perhaps the rating suffered from it.
A visceral and defiant poetry collection on growing up with gendered violence being normalized and the brutal path that strict gender roles in deeply patriarchal societies can take. My standout favorite of the recent Copper Canyon press ebook releases though the three I've read so far have all been excellent.

These are the stories told in my family, much more so than another recent (Latino) book I recently attempted and gave up on.
Alyse Bensel
Jun 10, 2019 rated it it was amazing
While I'm hesitant to use the word, brutal comes to mind in this collection that centers on the violence done to women, and the tendency for societies to ignore it. There is urgency and immediacy to this book, which is getting much rightfully deserved attention. "I swear // I've died. I swear I was born // dead again."
Nov 14, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites, owned
Just going to mimic many of the other reviews on this collection: I just need to sit down for a while. Every poem is a gut-punch. I like to mark the poems that especially stand out to me in collections, but I found myself adding a star to almost every poem in this collection. Just a big, gut-punchy oof all around.
Jan 02, 2020 rated it really liked it
4 stars

Brutal, but honest. This collection can be difficult to read at times. I think I would benefit from a re-read to pick up on more of the patterns, but it’s definitely a strong, cohesive collection.
“I learned to read by sounding out the names / in obituaries of those who had died. There were / so many people I could never finish / the section before leaving for school. / Six women are murdered a day. / Obituaries: / proof you can only die once.” —From poem “Aesthetic Translation”
Shawn  Aebi
Jan 03, 2020 rated it liked it
Strong offering with intense representation of la vida de macho y hembra. These pieces twist and turns with surprising/shocking discoveries along the way.
Ben VonArchimboldi
Jul 01, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Why haven’t you already bought this book? What’s wrong with you?
Aug 14, 2019 rated it it was amazing
damnit to shit.
Emily Pérez
May 12, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Josue Rodriguez
Dec 10, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2019
A collection of thoughtful, emotionally heightening poems on the latin-american woman experience.

Some great passages here.
Stephen Byrne
Sep 17, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Powerful collection.
Rosario Martinez
Feb 16, 2019 rated it it was amazing
A must-read. Every time I turned the page I kept nodding my head in agreeance, in anger and frustration because there are so many truths that hurt but motivate to keep speaking your truth to stand up for what you believe in. This book is amazing! I felt Natalie's words are so daring, so real they stand out and stay with you. This collection is a must because it sheds light on the injustices that come our way when we are young and well into womanhood, with resilience and bravery that exists in ...more
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Jul 07, 2019
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Jan 03, 2020
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Jun 26, 2019
Shaina Clingempeel
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Jan 20, 2020
Kent Winward
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Apr 29, 2019
Julie Chavez Dimas
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Dec 11, 2019
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Natalie Scenters-Zapico is from the sister cities of El Paso, Texas, U.S.A. and Ciudad Juárez, Chihuahua, México. She is the author of The Verging Cities, which won the Great Lakes Colleges' Association New Writers Award, the National Association of Chicana/o Studies Poetry Award, and was featured as a top ten debut by Poets and Writers (June 2015). A 2015 CantoMundo fellow, her poems have ...more
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“ভালো কঙ্কাল
জীবন অনেক ছোটো, আর আমি তা দেশের মেয়েদের বলি ।
জীবন অনেক ছোটো, আর আমি ওদের দেখাই কেমন করে কথা বলতে হয়
দরোজা না খুলে পুলিশের সঙ্গে, কেমন করে
সোশাল সিকিউরিটি নম্বর ফাঁকা রাখতে হবে
পরীক্ষার খাতায়, আমি এসব দেশের মেয়েদের শেখাই।
এই জগত রোজ ওদের বলে আমি তোমাদের ঘৃণা করি
আর আমি তা দেশের মেয়েদের কাছে লুকোই না
কেননা বাসের চালক ওদের লাথিয়ে বের করে দ্যায়
রাস্তায় টিকিট ফাঁকি দেবার জন্য । কেননা আমি ভালোবাসি
দেশের মেয়েদের, আমি ওদের পুরুষদের থেকে আগলে রাখি
যারা ওদের পরস্পরের মাথা ঠুকে ঘণ্টাধ্বনি শুনতে চায়।
জীবন অনেক ছোটো আর জগতটা ভয়ঙ্কর । আমি জানি
কোনো দয়ালু আগন্তুক এই দেশে নেই যারা এক মরুভূমি
দূরত্বের বোন, আর আমি এগুলো দেশের মেয়েদের কাছে
লুকোই না । জগতকে ওদের কাছে বিক্রি করা আমার
কাজ নয়, কিন্তু ওদের আগলে রাখা যাতে নিজের দেশে
ফেরত পাঠিয়ে দেয়া না হয় । আমাদের প্রথম
বাড়িমালিক একবালতি কাচবার কাপড় এনে বলল
তোর গায়ের রঙ পরিষ্কার হয়ে যাবে তাড়াতাড়ি।
ও দেশের মেয়েকে ঝাঁকুনি দিয়ে বলল, তোদের হাড়
খাটুনির জন্য বেশ শক্তপোক্ত । দেশের মেয়ে, আমরা কি
এই জায়গাটা সুন্দর করে তুলতে পারি ?
আমি এই জায়গাটা সুন্দর করে তোলার চেষ্টা করেছি ।”
“তুমি এক অন্ধকার দেহ
জলের যাতে তলদেশের পাথর দেখা যাচ্ছে না
তোমার ওপর থেকে । তুমি কেবল জলের একমাত্র অন্ধকার দেহ
মরুভূমিতে যেখানে চারিদিকে ছড়িয়ে রয়েছে রক্তাক্ত ক্যাকটাস ।
তোমার কন্ঠের হাড়ের কাছে তুমি বইছ একটা সংকীর্ণ গিরিখাত
একটা চুলে বাঁধা । তুমি দিনের পর দিন ঘুরে বেড়াও নিজের থেকে জল খেয়ে,
কেননা তুমি এই জমির একমাত্র অন্ধকার দেহ
জলের । দিগন্তরেখায় তুমি এক নারীকে খুঁজে পাও
বিছানায়, তার বুক লালায় ভিজে, তুমি লাথিয়ে তাকে বিছানা থেকে
ফেলে দাও, আর চাদরের তলায় তার জায়গা নাও । একজন লোক
তোমার পাশে শুয়ে আছে । সে তোমার অন্ধকার দেহ গিলে ফ্যালে
জলের আর তোমাকে নারীর দেহ দ্যায়, যে দেহের সঙ্গে তুমি
কখনও পরিচিত হওনি । নারী হিসাবে পুরুষ তোমাকে খোসপাঁচড়া দ্যায়
আর সেই খোস দিয়ে তুমি শ্বাস নাও, আর খোস সত্ত্বেও তুমি এক মৃত
শিশুর জন্ম দাও জলের অভাবে । তুমি শিশুটাকে লাথিয়ে
বিছানা থেকে ফেলে দাও, কিন্তু শিশুটি সেই নারীর কোলে ফিরে আসে
যার বিছানা তুমি চুরি করেছিলে। তুমি কাঁদো যাতে তোমাকে আবার
জলের অন্ধকার দেহ দেয়া হয় । লোকটা তোমাকে লাথিয়ে বিছানা থেকে
ফেলে দ্যায়, তোমাকে জঞ্জালে ঢেকে দ্যায়, আর তোমাকে মরুভূমিতে
পালটে দ্যায় । তুমি একটা বিছানার জন্যে কাঁদো যাতে লোকটা তোমাকে
আর কখনও শুতে দেবে না । তুমি তোমার দেহের পাথরের বিছানার জন্যে
কাঁদো যা জলের অভাবে মরুভূমি হয়ে গেছে ।

আমার মুখের ভেতরে একটা পাখি আছে
আমি ওটা তোমার পেটে খুঁজে পেলুম, আর ধরলুম
দুই আঙুল দিয়ে । পাখিটাকে রাখলুম”
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