Shaking Off The Dark
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Poetry in Spanish, English and Spanglish. Latino/a Studies. First published in 1984 by Arte Publico, Shaking off the Dark has become one of the classics of Chicano literature. This new, corrected edition features poems not included in the first edition, as well as introduction and bibliography. These poems are thoughtful, angry, perceptive, and address such topics as art, time, love, oppression, history, and language itself. Distraught, /mad-eyed from told formulas/bound to rule my easy ways, /I look, I see, /but fail once more to know. In this failure to know, however, Villanueva provides us a gorgeous window onto the worlds he sees so sharply. So arise, Chicano, he extorts, arise from the shadow of Nothingness, /arise from that neverending Nada of servitude./The problem is we live by other peoples words (from Speak Up, Chicano, Speak Up ). Villanueva does speak up, creating poems to counter other peoples words. A recipient of the American Book Award, Villanueva lives in Boston and teaches at Boston University.
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