Orrery for Borderland Ghosts
“Orrery for Borderland Ghosts” from GEOGRAPHIC TONGUE: by Rodney Gomez
Published by Pleiades Press 2020.
Copyright © 2020 by Rodney Gomez.
All rights reserved.
Reproduced by Poetry Daily with permission.
Rodney Gomez was born and raised in Brownsville, Texas. He serves as the 2020-2021 McAllen, Texas Poet Laureate. His poetry collections include Geographic Tongue (Pleiades Press, 2020), winner of the Pleiades Press Visual Poetry Series, Arsenal with Praise Song (Orison Books, 2021), Ceremony of Sand (YesYes Books, 2019), winner of the Discovery Prize from the Texas Writers’ League, and Citizens of the Mausoleum (Sundress Publications, 2018). His work appears in Poetry, New England Review, The Gettysburg Review, North American Review, Verse Daily, and other journals. His chapbook Mouth Filled Night won the Drinking Gourd Prize from Northwestern University’s Poetry and Poetics Colloquium. In 2020 he was awarded an Academy of American Poets Poet Laureate Fellowship “given to honor poets of literary merit appointed to serve in civic positions and to enable them to undertake meaningful, impactful, and innovative projects”. A member of the Macondo Writers Workshop, Gomez holds a BA from Yale and an MFA in creative writing from the University of Texas Pan American.
“A radical work of compassion, Geographic Tongue, baroque, visually stunning, lyrically gorgeous, is a profound exploration of the sacred geometry underlying our malleable forms, their chameleon manifestations, and the inevitable decay of this flesh, revealing how these borders shape our concepts of autonomy, community, and, at last, our most human of divinities.”
—J. Michael Martinez
“Rodney Gomez dissects his poems—each phrase deforms into image & word—like a cell dividing into multiples and creating new life. These fragments become a solid block, like a new identity throughout his book. Geographic Tongue is a poetic anatomy experiment: ‘…leave the bottom free, since melting entirely into something new requires a little of the old you.'”