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Danzirly (Ambroggio Prize) (Paperback)
Danzirly is a striking bilingual poetry collection that fiercely examines the nuances of the American Dream for Latinx people in the United States. With a backdrop of stringent immigration policies, the #MeToo movement, and the increasingly tangible threat of climate change, this collection considers multigenerational Latinx identities in a rapidly changing country and world. Through the author’s Colombian American lens, the poems explore the intersections of culture, gender, history, and intergenerational grief.
Danzirly does not shy away from confronting traditional gender roles, religion, and anxieties surrounding climate change and the digital age. Gloria Muñoz addresses Latinx stereotypes and powerfully dismantles them in poetic form, juxtaposing the promised wonders of a life in America with the harsh realities that immigrants face as they build their lives and raise their families here. Winner of the Academy of American Poets’ Ambroggio Prize, this collection of poems is an unforgettable reckoning of the grief and beauty that pulses through twenty-first-century America.
About the Author
Gloria Muñoz is the author of Danzirly and the chapbook Your Biome Has Found You. She holds degrees from Sarah Lawrence College and the University of South Florida, and she teaches at Eckerd College.
“‘What danzirly poems!’ This is what I imagine the father in this book might say, using what he deems ‘the most glorious’ adjective ‘in the English language’ but in reality is a mishearing of the U.S. national anthem’s ‘dawn’s early.’ Nevertheless, this neologism, which the father applies to everything remarkable, describes perfectly a poetic language energized by what is simultaneously emergent and at the brink of extinction—when the speaker moves between origins and imagined futures, or a father denies his own immigrant hardship and cheerfully tells his daughter, ‘You are / American.’ This book is about interrogating the mold that shaped ‘the plastic / of my parents’ American dreams’ while worrying about its effects on the next generation, and it flips the script to show these molds’ destructive nature. The poems compose a fractured anthem that sings of connection and disconnection to place, identity, family, and language. To the tune of ‘you win, you lose, you win, you lose,’ this book’s anthem is ultimately about the immigrant’s struggle and desire to thrive, proclaiming proudly, ‘Por si las moscas, // we’re prepared / for anything.’”—Rosa Alcalá, author of Undocumentaries
“In this utterly unique bilingual collection, Muñoz brilliantly negotiates two languages and the spaces between them, exploring the ever transient emblem of the American Dream through themes of lineage and loss, cultural and spiritual inheritance, assimilation, and racial and gender inequality.”—Richard Blanco, 2013 Presidential Inaugural Poet, author of How to Love a Country
“‘But we are all on the brink of / something. Aren’t we?’ Gloria Muñoz’s Danzirly grapples with identity, place, and belonging; with the edges and borders and brinks where we find ourselves; with what we remember and what we do not want to remember; with what we speak and how we speak it; and with how the words we use shape the lives we live. This book is essential reading.”—Maggie Smith, author of Good Bones and Keep Moving
“Somewhere between dazzling and dawn is a mondegreen that confuses survival and desire, love and devastation. Gloria Muñoz has written a book that confronts the myths that raised her and the painful negotiations forced by nation, family, and institutions. These poems shelter their subjects, even as they undo the knotted entanglements that bring them together.”—Raquel Salas Rivera, author of lo terciario / the tertiary and while they sleep (under the bed is another country)
“Gloria Muñoz’s voice rings with an authenticity that occurs when tradition is brought into the service of intimate originality. What a joy to discover such an artist.”—Jay Hopler, author of The Abridged History of Rainfall
"In Danzirly, the landscape is often shifting: Colombia 1948, a present-day American strip mall, a plane landing in Beijing. With an eye on the past and an eye on the future, Gloria Muñoz steps boldly into the space between languages and wrestles with the complicated present. Muñoz is a cartographer of the sparks that arise from the friction of cultures rubbing together. We see a wide-range of poetic styles at work, but the emotional heart is a sonnet cycle that paints a portrait of Muñoz’ free-spirited grandfather. Join me in welcoming this powerful, new voice."—Jeffrey McDaniel, author of Chapel of Inadvertent Joy