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Sin Puertas Visibles

Sin Puertas Visibles: An Anthology Of Contemporary Poetry By Mexican Women

Edited and translated by Jen Hofer
Copyright Date: 2003
https://doi.org/10.2307/j.ctt5vkf4x
Pages: 256
https://www.jstor.org/stable/j.ctt5vkf4x
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  • Book Info
    Sin Puertas Visibles
    Book Description:

    Sin puertas visiblesis a fully bilingual anthology that features emerging women poets whose work provides a taste of the adventurous new spirit infusing Mexican literature. All eleven poets represented have had at least one book published in Mexico, yet none of their work has been translated into English until now.Featuring the work of: Cristina Rivera-Garza, Carla Faesler, Angélica Tornero, Ana Belén López, Silvia Eugenia Castillero, Mónica Nepote, Dana Gelinas, María Rivera, Ofelia Pérez Sepúlveda, Dorantes, and Laura Solózano.Mexico poesses one of Latin America's most important poetic traditions, but its depth and range are virtually unknown to readers north of the border. Reflecting the diversity and complexity f contemporary mexican poetry, the poems presented here are by turns meditative and explosive, sensuous and inventive, ironic and tender--in short, they are subversive, provocative, and bold.

    eISBN: 978-0-8229-7930-2
    Subjects: Language & Literature

Table of Contents

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  1. Cristina Rivera-Garza

  2. Carla Faesler

  3. Angélica Tornero

  4. Ana Belén López

  5. Silvia Eugenia Castillero

    • Innard
      (pp. 92-93)

      Once again the threshold worn down from so much waiting, the night unhung nearer; oblong and ambiguous it stammers out substances until it becomes black. Definitive it falls, nothing it undulates, everything is drawers lurking, suspicion of it behind a thick down. The house, a tumor of knotted threads and when the light is turned on something withdraws in blinded flight, insane race through the old yellow walls to hide itself in invisible walkways beneath the drab rug. When it returns it’s still taciturn, its eyes covered with large slimy tears; sometimes a tangled ball unraveling, other times a sphere...

    • Splinter
      (pp. 92-93)

      An arrow, so much sun. So much ammunition of rays crossing. Every point pricks, pecks, crepitating the water cracks. The current contracts, twists, splinters in the deep. The clefts are magenta birds with raucous caws. Robins sparkle between leaves, trifling, minuscule, they skid with tonal variations blushing from carmine to rosy, swollen with juice until they glisten cherry or peach. Farther, a tree run aground, petrified in ochres....

    • The Jeopard
      (pp. 94-95)

      Night lowers its drapes, residues of light harbored between the wrinkles on my forehead and the bones that exceed my slight figure. Light adorns things with shapes inconclusive; a salty vapor rises, the water nears and then falls into the streets. I fold my four paws on the sidewalk and my body is a line of rocks on the riverbank. Beneath my belly the moon boils, ulcerous. Like someone dying, with ears perked, I pitch my last gaze into the sky and bellow with eyes full of fire. Each bar on the sewer is cast iron, one by one they...

    • Skein
      (pp. 96-97)

      From my tensed nucleus I trace a circular itinerary, a single resonance of a skein pressed to my abdomen. Of minuscule vaults I form the space, canals through which I project my city until I reach the center again. Here I sleep, then I stretch and continue. The line curving sways the plazas. I dally in them, fugitive from the air and the water. My way is smooth, but always comes to rigid crossroads that return my steps to me. At night I feel the corners flaring up. I look for animals that nibble at their own outline, a shape...

    • Chimera
      (pp. 98-99)

      Luminous rays penetrate the tarnished green of an eye that looks like a dead cenote. But the humor is still humid, allows the light to fix itself in clusters of nervures, and send the iris persistent images: roots as if in relief; amber suspended from specters that should have been trees; fossils of birds that used to live in the jungle (quechol, cotinga, tzinizcan). And in the very depths of the aged eye, a chimera stalking. Beast made of fragments: at the front it’s a lion, in the middle a goat and at the back a serpent. Aboard its eyes...

    • minute amphibian
      (pp. 100-101)

      cover the windows with rods don’t let it init arrived with the delirium wash the ivy from the wallsit appeared in a sprig of broom on a puddle of lightlet the apple trees fall into the well poisonedit was a live fish in an ocean of sandlet’s flee the nest of timeit came to spin cocoonswall the house in with iron

      so its bright won’t penetrateit seemed a white bird inflameddivert the water’s courseit blossomed in the pyracanthacut the lilies sap the willows with droughtit arrived like an...

    • The Hare
      (pp. 102-103)

      The midnight sun was larger than the bridge, its reds, almost flame almost blood, overflowed the waters. At that moment—the sunset halfway down the bridge—from the sun appeared a rotating moon scattering water like spines. And it opened two large eyes upon the sky. The water’s coming and going made it possible to see the hare: in its spongy body time is forged, it is a space that absorbs from the world the first visions collected in corners like dustbunnies; and the hollows where unfulfilled illusions remained, and images of yesterday, unfurled in the internal cavities of the...

    • WHERE SOMETHING MIGHT BE ALTOGETHER SOMETHING ELSE
      (pp. 104-106)

      Perhaps the primary impulse driving my dedication to writing poetry is a desire to extract the heart out of things. To delve into the unsolvable mystery of what exists, and craft a physics of objects, through which objects themselves—including memories, emotions, dreams—are revisited and named all over again.

      Descendents of wizards, poets use the analogic power of words, as analogy is the link between “this” and “that,” out of which the image arises as a tool for mastering reality. Thus the poetic word evokes and reconstructs an existential urgency, and becomes the carrier of the actual thing. It...

  6. Mónica Nepote

    • To take up the word again,
      (pp. 108-109)
    • The blood leaks from this woman
      (pp. 110-111)
    • Image of the Fish
      (pp. 112-113)

      The fish dangles in its glass case. Far-off, it’s an anatomy lesson, the discourse of an alien life, a small miracle in an undulating realm. Perhaps a recollection of turquoise blue, perhaps also the image of the prodigy in the fall.

      The fish dangles and its crystalline gaze knows of turbid empires, sagacity, escape. Speaks also to its extinction, its fragile nature. The fish says more by what it does not say, in its coded language that recalls a time before any city, when, simple in our bath, we gazed at one another mouthing the grandeur of god....

    • The Place
      (pp. 112-113)

      I delve deep into the place distrusting, my touch clumsy—as if I were detaching my spine in the predicted fear of pain. I delve deep into the place without the certainty of stone or of dust.

      Light does not know this corner. Feet and arms like Lazarus following the voice, imprecise animal in the body of the night....

    • Visitation
      (pp. 114-115)

      A white dove at my window. I look at its eye, the world’s mystery turns in its arid eye. Astonished, my hand extends towards the white.

      Like two enemies face to face, like snow, it flees from my touch. The only thing possible is the possession of air.

      Its flight remains, inheritance of that revolving world, the wake of the world in my window....

    • Think of that statue open in the heart of the city
      (pp. 118-119)
    • (POETICS STATEMENT)
      (pp. 120-122)

      “Ask an obvious question, get an obvious answer,” or so the saying says. I learned to say prayers in my infancy, though I’ll admit it was some time ago that I forgot the subtle and oppressive murmurings of prayer. No, perhaps I haven’t forgotten. Poetry is a substitute for prayer, and that is as it should be: a subtle (though oppressive) murmuring, its oppressiveness comes from the searching, from the state of pursuit in which the poet submerges her or himself, from that persistent traveling with no return, toward language, whose uneven ground can make you lose your head and,...

  7. Dana Gelinas

  8. María Rivera

    • Poetics Statement
      (pp. 156-158)

      Poetry is the liturgy through which the world is possible, even within its impossibility. An exercise of intelligencemoved, the poem is a synthesis of spiritual battles. An interior discipline encoded in the training of eye and ear, and likewise of intuition. The poem, that intention towards the unutterable, is also an investigation into the possibilities of sense, a vertical in time’s horizontality. Decanted in silence and tempered by its own high temperatures, the poem is thesubjectof revelation, and the language that creates a reality accessible only through poetry. A critical, demanding poetry, poised to exist, without fears...

  9. Ofelia Pérez Sepúlveda

  10. Dolores Dorantes

  11. Laura Solórzano

    • House Poem:
      (pp. 206-207)

      I explained the reason. I opened the mouth of words and the snuffling expressed its knife. I said: this is the slope, these are the feet, this is the mold of my intimate acts and this life, it is also the evasion of life.

      The words stopped sounding. The eyes looked one more time, at the satisfied curve of the sky: clouds of momentary peace and sky that recasts sky. I explained celestial forms in comparison to domestic ones. I displayed old windows, bathroom curtain rods, defunct liquids, indefinite arrangements. I opened the mouth of love to gulp down saliva....

    • Incessant Poem:
      (pp. 206-207)

      It begins to boil. The smoke’s gullet, and the automobile’s, they find their prey. The gale passes and the divided prayers create new families. Flurries of truth flung out into the street and the street begins to unleash its black bread; the sidewalk to bore into the front wall of what might be ours. Tensions boil and migraines overwhelm the masts of dream. We surround the house, experiencing a useless sensation. The balloon of fear announces us. The monitor’s reflection prunes us and the letters flow, describing one after another, invincible circles....

    • Horizon:
      (pp. 208-209)

      Constructions weaken in the vortex of dust. Abandoned papers beside the decrepit wall, while the sheets undulate the familial flag: infallible odds and ends that call us to assemble later along the bottomless ground. Uneven paradises, alive and full of trash. The lids rarely resuscitate and the pulp furrows the precipice of the drain. Insides that weigh heavy. Density that wanes past. And the space crowded with fragmentary rebozos, deformed leftovers and stains of stiff haystalks, which in the distance seem like well-placed brush strokes....

    • Speech Poem:
      (pp. 208-209)

      The voice on horseback. I listen to the breaths, the salivation. I listen to the rapid flow of vowels and consonants, the sonorous eddies of the blood, the coagulation that occasions a state of pause, momentary arrest so as to experience the current of words rotating, unseating old sentences, scratching at the silence to penetrate, to intervene with renewed leverage, the ambiguous mouth and little by little with each letter to advance toward the central approach of their meanings, casually endowed with ungovernable equilibrium....

    • Street Country:
      (pp. 210-211)

      It’s this one, the smell. This flying of metallic particles between the teeth. The march continues, their soles reverberate rhythmically and here is the concert, with all its phenomena, with all its children. The flag is surf and heart; domesticated heart that kneels down and is not transformed. This is the smell of the racked street, numbered on the wheel, on the reddest light. We are the pedestrian, the eye, the listener, the guardian, dead leaves withered in the wind’s path and the black smoke defeating us with its spilled and dirty particles....

    • Mute Poem:
      (pp. 212-213)

      I spell out my house in newly dead tree. I spell out Sunday of clear omissions and then languor of a life doubled over and described. Using all the letters, I put a strangeness in the coordinates of a suspended pain. I spell out this throbbing of eyes open where I would think they’d close. Where the bed imposes a palate of months. Letters tend to feel another pronunciation, another labial fissure through which they emerge savage and happy like unexpected panes of glass....

    • Deluge:
      (pp. 212-213)

      By way of inventing a rivulet on the roof and continuing to struggle with the burning floor tiles and by way of requesting that the water slide cleanly over the dust’s exclusive appointments, the rain has responded and our pronunciation has been exactly right. We have been washed by primary substance. Our voice has fallen onto our war and we remain silent watching how the moment’s vestments become lost in elusive and incidental texture. The intense waters manufacture a crumbling. We keep quiet, looking at the sky that fertilizes a new reply....

    • Herbarium:
      (pp. 216-217)

      Who would be able to seduce the willow’s powerful arms! To climb, propagating the chimerical use of the days, which proffer new buds. The days, which elapse among spaces sun-bleached and swaddled. Those who can grow press their size into elastic fiber: unconscious of their arachnid fear in the downward slant of an evoked cortex. It flowers when the wind releases the frond, when it exudes powder and springs up again, delicate. Thus the circulating survives. Thus the greens recognize that they are naked, but subject to the love of the stalk. Our central question liberates forms, which flee from...

    • (POETICS STATEMENT)
      (pp. 218-222)

      I believe that over time the poem comes to find and animate its own body.

      In language a new organism is formed, of a peculiar and unique density.

      I would like for the poetic body to contain the vigor necessary so its movement might make it spin and act (toward the eye’s ear).

      Words are a carnal vehicle. But I suppose it is action, or the emotion of action, which should govern the text. Meanings between words can multiply when we break the ligatures of the predictable; then the possibilities for astonishment increase.

      Old forms live in the deepest space...