9780140237788

Unsettling America : An Anthology of Contemporary Multicultural Poetry

by ;
  • ISBN13:

    9780140237788

  • ISBN10:

    014023778X

  • Format: Paperback
  • Copyright: 11/1/1994
  • Publisher: Penguin Books

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Summary

A multicultural array of poets explore what it is means to be American This powerful and moving collection of poems stretches across the boundaries of skin color, language, ethnicity, and religion to give voice to the lives and experiences of ethnic Americans. With extraordinary honesty, dignity, and insight, these poems address common themes of assimilation, communication, and self-perception. In recording everyday life in our many American cultures, they displace the myths and stereotypes that pervade our culture. Unsettling Americaincludes work by: Amiri Baraka Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni Rita Dove Louise Erdich Jessica Hagedorn Joy Harjo Garrett Hongo Li-Young Lee Pat Mora Naomi Shihab Nye Marye Percy Ishmael Reed Alberto Rios Ntozake Shange Gary Soto Lawrence Ferlinghetti Nellie Wong David Hernandez Mary TallMountain ...and many more.

Author Biography

Maria Mazziotti Gillan is the director of The Poetry Center at Passaic County Community College in Paterson, New Jersey. She is the author of five collections of poetry.

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments vii
Introduction xix
UPROOTING 1(50)
Where Is My Country?
3(1)
Nellie Wong
Dreams in Harrison Railroad Park
4(1)
Heavy Blue Veins
5(1)
Luis J. Rodriguez
We Never Stopped Crossing Borders
6(1)
Wired In
6(1)
Lamont B. Steptoe
Such a Boat of Land
7(1)
Immigrants in Our Own Land
8(2)
Jimmy Santiago Baca
We Are Americans Now, We Live in the Tundra
10(1)
Marilyn Chin
Elena
11(1)
Pat Mora
What Were You Patching?
11(3)
Ruth Lisa Schechter
In Texas Grass
14(1)
Quincy Troupe
The Old Italians Dying
15(2)
Lawrence Ferlinghetti
Dust World
17(2)
Adrian C. Louis
Father from Asia
19(1)
Shirley Geok-lin Lim
from Moving
19(1)
Hamod (Sam)
Katori Maru, October 1920
20(1)
James Masao Mitsui
Restroom
21(2)
Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni
The Brides Come to Yuba City
23(2)
Grandmother, a Caribbean Indian, Described by My Father
25(1)
Yvonne V. Sapia
Indian Boarding School: The Runaways
26(1)
Louise Erdrich
Braly Street
27(2)
Gary Soto
The Woman Hanging from the Thirteenth Floor Window
29(3)
Joy Harjo
Kinged
32(1)
Shalin Hai-Jew
Dream Poem
33(1)
Mary Jo Bona
The Last Wolf
33(1)
Mary TallMountain
Tattoo
34(1)
Gregg Shapiro
Father of My Father
35(3)
Lawson Fusao Inada
Letter to a Cretan Flute-Maker
38(1)
Justin Vitiello
What Do I Know of Journey
38(1)
David Meltzer
When My Grandmother Said ``Pussy''
39(1)
Carole Bernstein
14th Street Was Gutted in 1968
40(1)
Cheryl Clarke
Walking by the Cliffside Dyeworks
41(1)
Robert Carnevale
The Old Buildings
42(2)
Pedro Pietri
In Response to Executive Order 9066
44(1)
Dwight Okita
The Nice Thing About Counting Stars
45(3)
Next Year, in Jerusalem
48(1)
Shirley Kaufman
The Survivor
48(2)
Philip Levine
Sam
50(1)
Lucille Clifton
PERFORMING 51(76)
Indian Movie, New Jersey
53(1)
Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni
Dear John Wayne
54(1)
Louise Erdrich
When I Was Growing Up
55(2)
Nellie Wong
Doreen
57(3)
Janice Mirikitani
Failure of an Invention
60(1)
Safiya Henderson-Holmes
Today Was a Bad Day Like TB
61(1)
Chrystos
Filipino Boogie
61(3)
Jessica Hagedorn
Indian Blood
64(1)
Mary TallMountain
At the Electronic Frontier
65(1)
Miguel Algarin
Vision (2)
66(1)
Sherman Alexie
Translated from the American
67(1)
Imitation of Life
67(1)
Michael S. Weaver
The Black and White Galaxie
68(2)
Blind Solo
70(1)
Mafioso
71(1)
Sandra Mortola Gilbert
Digging in the Streets of Gold
72(1)
Barry Seiler
Matinee
73(1)
Susan Clements
Deer Cloud
74(1)
Can't Tell
75(1)
Nellie Wong
Amazone
76(1)
Mary Jo Bona
Blonde White Women
77(2)
Patricia Smith
Cincinnati
79(1)
Mitsuye Yamada
American Son
80(2)
Why I Don't Speak Italian
82(1)
Arthur L. Clements
The First
83(2)
Grace Cavalieri
Brain on Ice: The El Train Poem
85(1)
Michael Warr
Malcolm Is 'Bout More Than Wearing a Cap
86(2)
American Dream: First Report
88(1)
Joseph Papaleo
Behaving Like a Jew
88(1)
Gerald Stern
The Mary Morelle Show
89(5)
Denise Nico Leto
To H.N.
94(1)
David Mura
My Rich Uncle, Whom I Only Met Three Times
95(2)
Marge Piercy
Untitled Blues
97(1)
Yusef Komunyakaa
Second Class Citizen
98(1)
Jennifer Lagier
Three Gypsies
99(1)
Shalin Hai-Jew
from Sweet Daddy
100(2)
Patricia Smith
What It's Like to Be a Black Girl (For Those of You Who Aren't)
102(1)
Starlight Haven
103(1)
Shirley Geok-lin Lim
Black and White
104(2)
Barrio Beateo
106(1)
Jesse F. Garcia
Welcome
107(1)
David Hernandez
Tee
108(1)
Reuben Jackson
Big Chill Variations
108(1)
Albert James
109(1)
A Daddy Poem
110(1)
William J. Harris
Song No. 3
111(1)
Sonia Sanchez
Song at Midnight
111(1)
Lucille Clifton
Junior High Dance
112(2)
Allison Joseph
What Would I Do White?
114(1)
June Jordan
So Mexicans Are Taking Jobs from Americans
115(1)
Jimmy Santiago Baca
Poet: What Ever Happened to Luther?
116(1)
Haki R. Madhubuti
That Great Wingless Bird
117(2)
Adrian C. Louis
Immigrants
119(1)
Pat Mora
Depression Days
119(1)
A Note on My Son's Face
120(3)
Toi Derricotte
Blackbottom
123(1)
Lost Name Woman
124(1)
Shirley Geok-lin Lim
Coca-Cola and Coco Frio
124(3)
Martin Espada
NAMING 127(86)
Senora X No More
129(1)
Pat Mora
Dying with the Wrong Name
130(2)
Hamod (Sam)
Leaves
132(2)
How I Got That Name
134(2)
Marilyn Chin
Elegy for Chloe Nguyen
136(2)
Niggerlips
138(1)
Martin Espada
From an Island You Cannot Name
139(1)
Mama, Come Back
139(2)
Nellie Wong
On the Road to Damascus, Maryland
141(1)
Enid Dame
How I Changed My Name, Felice
142(1)
Felix Stefanile
Jade
143(1)
Janice Mirikitani
Being Jewish in a Small Town
144(1)
Lyn Lifshin
We Exist
145(1)
Janice Gould
Jacket Notes
146(1)
Ishmael Reed
Having the Wrong Name for Mr. Wright
147(2)
Helen Barolini
Taking It Back
149(2)
Dixie Salazar
Pinon Nuts
151(2)
The Hula Skirt, 1959
153(1)
Kimiko Hahn
Song of the Third Generation
154(1)
Julia Lisella
Ka 'Ba
155(1)
Amiri Baraka
Funk Lore
156(2)
American Sonnets for My Father
158(2)
Daniela Gioseffi
Pigeons
160(1)
David Hernandez
A Poem about Intelligence for My Brothers and Sisters
161(2)
June Jordan
For Talking
163(2)
Denise Nico Leto
The Language of Great-Aunts
165(1)
Alberto Alvaro Rios
Nani
166(1)
Espresso
167(3)
Carol Lee Saffioti
Secret Love
170(1)
Milton Kessler
Good Grease
171(1)
Mary TallMountain
6th Grade---Our Lady of Pompeii
172(1)
Vittoria repetto
Mama
173(3)
Claire Kageyama
Preparations for Seder
176(1)
Michael S. Glaser
Changing Address Books
177(2)
Crazy Horse Monument
179(1)
Peter Blue Cloud
from Prose Poems
180(1)
Liz Rosenberg
In Answer to Their Questions
181(4)
Giovanna (Janet) Capone
All I Want
185(1)
Luci Tapahonso
Two Grandmas
186(2)
Stanley H. Barkan
South Bronx Testimonial
188(2)
Sandra Maria Esteves
Grandma in the Shower
190(1)
Dale M. Kushner
Haciendo Apenas la Recoleccion
191(1)
Tino Villanueva
On Alabama Ave., Paterson, NJ, 1954
192(1)
Rachel Guido deVries
From Okra to Greens
193(1)
Ntozake Shange
But My Blood
194(1)
Rose Romano
So I Lost My Temper
195(2)
For My Great-Grandfather: A Message Long Overdue
197(1)
Maxine Kumin
Bulosan Listens to a Recording of Robert Johnson
198(1)
Alfred Encarnacion
Miss Clement's Second Grade
199(1)
Maryfrances Cusumano Wagner
Recognized Futures
200(2)
Lisa Suhair Majaj
The Left Bank Jazz Society
202(1)
Michael S. Weaver
Blood
203(1)
Naomi Shihab Nye
Mnemonic
204(1)
Li-Young Lee
The Gift
205(1)
Nikki-Rosa
206(1)
Nikki Giovanni
Legacies
207(1)
Because of My Father's Job
208(1)
James Masao Mitsui
Yuba City School
209(1)
Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni
How I Learned English
210(3)
Gregory Djanikian
NEGOTIATING 213(88)
In the Elementary School Choir
215(2)
Gregory Djanikian
When I First Saw Snow
217(1)
Black Hair
217(1)
Gary Soto
The Elements of San Joaquin
218(1)
Behind Grandma's House
219(1)
Always Running
220(2)
Luis J. Rodriguez
Fire
222(2)
The Dancing
224(1)
Gerald Stern
In Memory We Are Walking
224(2)
Maria Mazziotti Gillan
I Remember Haifa Being Lovely But
226(1)
Lyn Lifshin
A Black Man's Sonata
227(2)
Michael S. Weaver
Improvisation for Piano
229(1)
Winnings
230(1)
Garrett Hongo
Susans
231(2)
Susan Clements
The Reservation
233(1)
English-Speaking Persons Will Find Translations
234(3)
Michael S. Glaser
Crazy Horse Speaks
237(3)
Sherman Alexie
Powwow Polaroid
240(1)
Soul Make a Path Through Shouting
241(1)
Cyrus Cassells
The Battle, Over and Over Again
242(3)
Safiya Henderson-Holmes
A Story About Chicken Soup
245(1)
Louis Simpson
Salt
246(1)
Yusef Komunyakaa
Something About Being an Indian
247(1)
Adrian C. Louis
Poem for the Young White Man Who Asked Me How I, an Intelligent, Well-Read Person, Could Believe in the War Between Races
248(2)
Lorna Dee Cervantes
Election Time
250(1)
Lamont B. Steptoe
Bicentennial Anti-Poem for Italian-American Women
251(1)
Daniela Gioseffi
The Yahrtzeit Light
252(2)
Lyn Lifshin
After the Anti-Semitic Calls on a Local Talk Station
254(1)
An Agony. As Now
255(1)
Amiri Baraka
Notes for a Poem on Being Asian American
256(2)
Dwight Okita
Portrait of Assimilation
258(1)
Chrystos
The Jewish Singles Event
258(1)
Stewart Florsheim
Coming of Age
259(2)
Michael Palma
At the Nuclear Rally
261(1)
Laura Boss
The Candy Lady
262(1)
My Father and the Figtree
263(1)
Naomi Shihab Nye
Half-Breed
264(1)
Cherrie Moraga
Modern Secrets
265(1)
Shirley Geok-lin Lim
Grandfather at the Indian Health Clinic
265(1)
Elizabeth Cook-Lynn
Birdfoot's Grampa
266(1)
Joseph Bruchac
Undressing Aunt Frieda
267(1)
Richard Michelson
Rib Sandwich
268(1)
William J. Harris
Going Home
268(2)
Wing Tek Lum
Upkeep
270(1)
Miriam Goodman
Armitage Street
271(2)
David Hernandez
Laughing Gas
273(1)
Ruth Whitman
Elegy
273(2)
Arthur L. Clements
Foreign Ways
275(1)
Diana Chang
Autobiography
275(1)
Robert Viscusi
Horse
276(2)
Gloria Anzaldua
Travels in the South
278(3)
Simon J. Ortiz
Grandmother
281(1)
Grace Cavalieri
Living Alone with Jesus
282(1)
Maxine Kumin
The Sweaters
283(1)
Lucia Maria Perillo
Heritage
284(2)
Linda Hogan
Lakota Sister/Cherokee Mother
286(1)
Victoria Lena Manyarrows
Wingfoot Lake
287(1)
Rita Dove
After the Funeral of Assam Hamady
288(4)
Hamod (Sam)
Friendly Town #1
292(2)
Safiya Henderson-Holmes
My First Riot: Bronx, NYC
294(1)
The Truth Is
295(2)
Linda Hogan
Hanging Fire
297(1)
Audre Lorde
In the Way Back
298(2)
Debi Kang Dean
Cultures
300(1)
Gloria Anzaldua
RE-ENVISIONING 301(84)
I Ask My Mother to Sing
303(1)
Li-Young Lee
I Walk in the History of My People
303(1)
Chrystos
I Have Not Signed a Treaty with the United States Government
304(1)
The Real Indian Leans Against
305(1)
Night Vision
306(1)
Lucille Clifton
In the Inner City
307(1)
The House on Moscow Street
307(2)
Marilyn Nelson Waniek
To Jesus Villanueva, with Love
309(3)
Alma Luz Villanueva
They Didn't Get Me
312(2)
My People Are the Color of the Earth
314(2)
From a Heart of Rice Straw
316(2)
Nellie Wong
April Fool Birthday Poem for Grandpa
318(1)
Diane di Prima
Bully
319(1)
Martin Espada
Anchorage
320(1)
Joy Harjo
For Alva Benson, and for Those Who Have Learned to Speak
321(1)
Chinese Hot Pot
322(1)
Wing Tek Lum
The Seder
323(2)
Enid Dame
The Bucket
325(2)
Rose Romano
Speaking with Hands
327(1)
Luis J. Rodriguez
Song: I Want a Witness
328(1)
Michael S. Harper
In the Good Old U.S.A.
328(2)
Jose Angel Villalongo, Sr.
Today We Will Not Be Invisible Nor Silent
330(1)
Victoria Lena Manyarrows
The View from Skates in Berkeley
331(2)
Quincy Troupe
I Defy You
333(1)
Shirley Geok-lin Lim
Prayer
333(1)
Joseph Bruchac
Lamenting the Inevitable
334(1)
Alicia Ostriker
Speaking Through White: For My Mother
335(2)
Kyoko Mori
Certificate of Live Birth
337(1)
Kimberly M. Blaeser
Cortez's Horse
338(2)
Pat Mora
Oye Mundo/ Sometimes
340(2)
Jesus Papoleto Melendez
The Men
342(1)
E. Ethelbert Miller
The New Apartment: Minneapolis
343(2)
Linda Hogan
A Dance for Ma Rainey
345(1)
Al Young
I Ain't Going to Hurry No More
346(1)
Jesse F. Garcia
Praise the Tortilla, Praise the Menudo, Praise the Chorizo
347(1)
Ray Gonzalez
The Last Word
348(1)
Amina Baraka
Martin and My Father
349(1)
David Hernandez
My Ringless Fingers on the Steering Wheel Tell the Story
350(1)
Laura Boss
The Women
351(1)
Cyrus Cassells
I Am Singing Now
352(1)
Luci Tapahonso
To Hell and Back, with Cake
353(2)
Safiya Henderson-Holmes
Friendly Town #3
355(2)
Out of Our Hands
357(2)
Cathy Song
The Old Man's Lazy
359(2)
Peter Blue Cloud
America
361(1)
Robert Creeley
Naayawva Taawi
362(2)
Wendy Rose
Story Keeper
364(2)
The Upside Down Basket
366(1)
Alan Chong Lau
La Migra
367(2)
Pat Mora
What the Gypsy Said to Her Children
369(1)
Judith Ortiz Cofer
The Floral Apron
369(1)
Marilyn Chin
I Give You Back
370(2)
Joy Harjo
For the Color of My Mother
372(1)
Cherrie Moraga
Present
373(2)
Sonia Sanchez
Norma
375(3)
An Anthem
378(1)
Arturo
379(1)
Maria Mazziotti Gillan
Public School No. 18: Paterson, New Jersey
380(2)
Growing Up Italian
382(3)
Contributors 385

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