Roy G. Guzmán’s Catrachos (Graywolf Press, 2020) is a stunning debut collection of poetry that immerses the reader in rich, vibrant language. Described as being “part immigration narrative, part elegy, and part queer coming-of-age story,” this powerful collection blends pop culture, humor, with Guzmán’s cultural experience to explore life, death, and borders both real and imaginary.
“This isn’t supposed to be a history book, and yet it is,” says Guzmán in discussing Catrachos. It’s not supposed to be anthropology, sociology, or a testimonial either, and yet it is. “Those are the contradictions, especially when you’re a marginalized writer, your words are always operating on so many different frequencies at once.”
“It is not a fallacy that the pulpería owner who wakes up
dressed in a tunic of warriors’ pelos, or the milkman
pressing his rough hands against the cow’s tectonic body,
remembers the skirted boy with an ovarian lipstick for a tongue,
the boy who offered a tenth of his knees to the teeth
of a country with dentures.”
— from “Finding Logic in a Crushed Head”
Roy G. Guzmán received a 2019 grant from the National Endowment for the Arts and a 2017 Ruth Lilly and Dorothy Sargent Rosenberg Poetry fellowship. Raised in Miami, Florida, Guzmán currently lives in Minneapolis. Catrachos is their first book of poetry, published by Graywolf Press in May 2020.
Andrea Blythe bides her time waiting for the apocalypse by writing speculative poetry and fiction. She is the author of three chapbooks, Twelve: Poems Inspired by the Brothers Grimm Fairy Tale (Interstellar Flight Press), Your Molten Heart / A Seed to Hatch (Kickstarter funded, 2018), and the collaboratively written Every Girl Becomes the Wolf (Finishing Line Press, 2018), authored alongside Laura Madeline Wiseman. She cohosts the New Books in Poetry podcast and is the creator of Once Upon the Weird.
Andrea Blythe bides her time waiting for the apocalypse by writing speculative poetry and fiction.