With the River on Our Face
Thursday, September 29th 2016
About Emmy Perez: Emmy Pérez earned her MFA from Columbia University and her BA from the University of Southern California. She is an associate professor at the University of Texas Rio Grande Valley, where she teaches in the MFA in creative writing and Mexican American studies programs.
About With the River on Our Face: Emmy Pérez’s poetry collection With the River on Our Face flows through the Southwest and the Texas borderlands to the river’s mouth in the Rio Grande Valley/El Valle. The poems celebrate the land, communities, and ecology of the borderlands through lyric and narrative utterances, auditory and visual texture, chant, and litany that merge and diverge like the iconic river in this long-awaited collection.
Pérez reveals the strengths and nuances of a universe where no word is “foreign.” Her fast-moving, evocative words illuminate the prayers, gasps, touches, and gritos born of everyday discoveries and events. Multiple forms of reference enrich the poems in the form of mantra: ecologist’s field notes, geopolitical and ecofeminist observations, wildlife catalogs, trivia, and vigil chants.