Black Mesa Poems

Jimmy Santiago Baca, Author New Directions Publishing Corporation $11.95 (0p) ISBN 978-0-8112-1102-4
The narrator of these poems lives in an adobe house built from tiles ``wagon'd to Black Mesa / one hundred fifty years ago.'' Baca ( Mart inaccent, yes?/yes/pk & Meditations on the South Valley ) draws directly for pk material from the small New Mexico town where he was born, telling of knife fights, the birth of children and animals, buying a lime-green patio set. He creates rituals from small gestures, expanding to mythic significance a boy who prefers red chile peppers, but eats the green his grandmother chooses. Few poets have paid such close attention to the passing seasons, particularly winter's harshness; although he finds this causes the death of animals, pk Baca also insists that ``Nature was not all that cruel.'' Writing in short, crisp, rhythmic lines, Baca transfigures a seemingly barren landscape. (Nov.)
Reviewed on: 11/01/1989
Release date: 11/01/1989
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