Wednesday, January 24, 2007

On the Eve of the Empress Carlota's Death, an Interview with a Member of Her Court, Cordelia Jordan de Degollado

Recently, in the Degollado Collection in the Benson Latin American Collection at the University of Texas at Austin, I found an old newspaper clipping from 1923. Copyright has expired, so here it is:
Excelsior, México, D.F.,
viernes 20 de julio de 1923


La Señora Cordelia Jordan de Degollado
Recordó Ayer la Epoca del Llamado
Imperio de Maximiliano

Read more here.

This and other texts are available on my Maximilian page. OK, back to blog vacation. Back blogging in February.

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

Madam Mayo on Blog Vacation

Gotta finish my novel. Plus I'm launching Tameme's first chapbook, Mexican writer Agustin Cadena's short story "Carne verde, piel negra" with my translation, "An Avocado from Michoacan". I'll be back blogging here in February.

"Trazos, color y escritura": Teresa Azuara's Creative Writing Workshop in Spanish in Queretaro, Mexico

Teresa Azuara's announcement: El próximo 15 de feb. empiezo un taller junto con una amiga pintora, Aura Moreno que se llamará "Trazos, color y escritura" para desarrollar la imaginación y creatividad a través de los sentidos. Será de 12 sesiones de 2hrs. c/u. For more information: aramaraz (at) (Teresa Azuara last appeared in Madam Mayo here.)

Saturday, January 13, 2007

Oasis of Stone: Visions of Baja California Sur

This gorgeous new coffee table book-- gorgeous through and through-- has text by Bruce Berger (author of Almost an Island) and photographs by Miguel Angel de la Cueva, who both live and work in La Paz. It is co-published by Sunbelt Publications and Planeta Peninsula, an environmental group based in La Paz. This is not just another coffee table book-- it is a deeply thoughtful and powerful work by two artists who know Baja California intimately.

(Apropos of Baja California, my own book, Miraculous Air, is about to come out in a paperback edition with Milkweed this spring. And: thanks to Baja Books & Maps, I'll be reading with Bruce Berger next month in San Jose del Cabo.)

Internet Surfari: Naked Authors

Hey, I'm wearing my bathrobe here. Alice just signaled that mystery writer Jacqueline Winspear over at the Naked Authors blog has an excellent on the hadj. Surf on over. (Speaking of litblogs, I find the Naked Author model--- having several writers, each taking one day-- an interesting model. La Bloga, ALTALK and Critical Mass are three other multi-blogger litblogs. It's been a while since I've done a "Gone to the Litblogs" post.) More anon.

Thursday, January 11, 2007

Tameme Is Back! Cadena's "Carne verde, piel negra ~ An Avocado from Michoacan" Is Tameme Chapbooks ~ Cuadernos's First Title

Mexican writer Agustin Cadena's exquisite short story "Carne verde, piel negra" with my translation as "An Avocado from Michoacan" is Tameme Chapbooks ~ Cuadernos's first title. The cover, by graphic designer Ines Hilde, features the painting "Aguacates" by Edgar Soberon.(Click here to see a larger and sharper image of the cover). Read more about Cadena in an interview reprinted on, and on He also blogs at El vino y la hiel. More anon.

Tuesday, January 09, 2007

Gregory Rabassa's National Medal of the Arts

My amigo the brilliant and prolific translator Harry Morales recently called me from New York--- news is (I hadn't heard), at the end of last year, Gregory Rabassa was awarded the 2006 National Medal of the Arts. One of the greatest literary translators of Latin American literature, Rabassa is the translator of Garcia Marquez's One Hundred Years of Solitude and author of a memoir, If This Be Treason: Translation and its Discontents. Harry tells me this is the first time the National Medal of the Arts was awarded to a translator. Read more on the CUNY newswire.

Wednesday, January 03, 2007

Literal: Latin American Voices

The new issue of Literal: Latin American Voices (winter 06/07) is just out and it is fantastic. Marking the 30th anniversary of the founding of Vuelta, Paz's juggernaut of a literary magazine, an essay by Maarten van Delden; also, an interview with Mexican "Crack" writer Jorge Volpi; writing by Jaime Moreno Villareal, and photographs by Pablo Ortiz Monasterio and (yes) Juan Rulfo. Kudos to founding editor Rose Mary Salum! (For more about Vuelta, by the way, have a look at Ilan Stavans' Octavio Paz: A Meditation.)

Tuesday, January 02, 2007

Sic Semper Tyrannis

Sic Semper Tyrannis! I'm not referring to Colonel Pat Lang's blog, but today's The Happy Booker, where Wendi Kaufman signals the consternating news in today's Washington Post that some suburban libraries may remove from their shelves quite a few titles that make a library worth its salt. Proust, Hemingway, Pasternak... tres passe... Read all about it here.