Texas, Being: A State of Poems (Hardcover)

Texas, Being: A State of Poems By Jenny Browne (Editor) Cover Image
By Jenny Browne (Editor)
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Texas, Being: A State of Poems collects more than forty-five poems from a beautiful and brutal state. Some are about the music of their languages. Some speak to the dead, some to the sun, and others to omissions of history. One concerns a hedgehog cactus, and another a roller rink. From "Happy, Texas" to "Palestine, TX," from seashores to skeletons to Selena, all are in one way or another about Texas, but good poems are always about more than one thing.

Selected by Jenny Browne, 2017 poet laureate of Texas, these poems draw a picture of one of America's vastly sublime yet most audaciously independent corners. In these diverse voices, the state is a lovely and painful contradiction of space and meaning. Texas is a place "where blind catfish cruise" and wild asters grow. It's a frame of mind where Jenny Boully writes "the history is unending" and Mexican American studies professor Christopher Carmona can "feel the slowness of time." Jorge Luis Borges wrote of it as "an endless plain / Where a man's cry dies a lonely death." Victoria Chang writes that "there is so / much sky that even birds / get lost."

Andrea "Vocab" Sanderson describes her hometown as a "fiercely loving city tougher on the outside / but smooth as pecan shells," and Naomi Shihab Nye reminds us to "be patient, sure there's lots of bad around, / but more room for good too, with all this empty." Whether it is Joshua Edwards imagining his photographer father or Primo Feliciano Mar n's declaration "Hail Texas, fraught with charms unknown," these voices, past and present, give us a glimpse into the poetic soul of the nation's most willful state.

Poets include Robert A. Ayres, Curtis Bauer, Jan Beatty, Layla Benitez-James, Jorge Luis Borges, Jenny Boully, Catherine Bowman, Susan Briante, Bobby Byrd, Christopher Carmona, Aline B. Carter, Rosemary Catacalos, Victoria Chang, Hayan Charara, Joshua Edwards, Tarfia Faizullah, Carrie Fountain, Vievee Francis, Mag Gabbert, Miriam Bird Greenberg, Lucy Griffith, Aaron Hand, Fady Joudah, Jim LaVilla-Havelin, Emma Lazarus, J. Estanislao Lopez, Primo Feliciano Mar n, Pablo Miguel Mart nez, Walter McDonald, Jasminne Mendez, Townsend Miller, Ange Mlinko, Naomi Shihab Nye, Shin Yu Pai, Cecily Parks, Emmy P rez, Octavio Quintanilla, Iliana Rocha, Andrea "Vocab" Sanderson, ire'ne lara silva, Jeff Sirkin, Margo Tamez, Lao Yang, Loretta Diane Walker, Emily Winakur, and Matthew Zapruder.

About the Author

Jenny Browne is a professor of English and creative writing at Trinity University. Her most recent poetry collection is Fellow Travelers: New and Selected Poems. Her poems and essays have appeared most recently in the American Poetry Review, the Oxford American, Poetry, the Nation, and the New York Times. She served concurrent terms as the 2016-18 poet laureate of San Antonio and the 2017 poet laureate of Texas, and she was the 2019-20 Distinguished Fulbright Scholar at the Seamus Heaney Centre in Belfast, Northern Ireland. She was inducted into the Texas Institute of Letters in 2023. She lives in San Antonio.

Product Details
ISBN: 9781595342928
ISBN-10: 1595342923
Publisher: Maverick Books
Publication Date: April 2nd, 2024
Pages: 96
Language: English