Miguelángel Meza's poetry chapbook, Dream Pattering Soles, was published this month by Ugly Duckling Presse in Elisa Taber's translation. A leading Guaraní poet, Meza was featured last year in the first installment of WWB's Indigenous Writing Project, which was devoted to Guaraní writing from Paraguay. In the poem featured here, Meza considers humanity's relationship to the environment.
As day dims.
To Carlos Villagra Marsal.
All the dry streams.
They intertwined, gushed, overflowed, cascaded.
Small fish extinguished.
Small fish with gold scales,
bred by bodies of water that dried,
Man leans back to sleep.
His head smolders.
Dreams of his ancestors
intertwined, like water in the forest;
of water binged, bonfires,
dances in the dark, and resounding takuapu.
Man lies down to die.
Nobody sees his honey words
drip from the sky
and perforate the soil
to stow the brightest stars.
They merged, void and earth,
From Dream Pattering Soles , © Ugly Duckling Presse, 2021 by Miguelángel Meza. Translation © 2021 by Elisa Taber. Reprinted by arrangement with the publisher. All rights reserved.
"Dawn" by Miguelángel Meza, translated by Tracy K. Lewis and Miguelángel Meza
The Indigenous Writing Project: Contemporary Guaraní Poetry
"An Archipelago in a Landlocked Country" by Elisa Taber
Published Dec 6, 2021 Copyright 2021 Miguelángel Meza
Miguelángel Meza is a Guaraní poet and cultural promoter born in Caacupé, Paraguay, in 1955. He has contributed to numerous anthropological and linguistic research studies, as well as translations. He has also worked for the National Ministry of Culture of Paraguay. He has published the books
Ita ha’eñoso (1985), Perurima rapykuere (1985 and 2001), Purahéi (2001 and 2011), Chipi Gonzales guahẽrã (2006), Maleõ (2007), Perurima pypore (2010), and Arami mburukujaguýre (2012). He is the founder of the cartonera press Mburukujarami Kartonéra, with which he has published numerous titles authored by himself and others.
Elisa Taber is a PhD candidate at McGill University. Her writing and translations are troubled into being, even when that trouble is a kind of joy.
An Archipelago in a Landlocked Country is her first book.