90 Miles

Selected And New Poems

These poems, at once exuberant and sophisticated, are driven by the desire to preserve. Suarez holds onto the precious country of family, and he skillfully recounts its history. He is constantly aware of his environment, both what it is and what it is not. How the language is his and is not. He explores the magic and wonder of the everyday where everything is new and is not new. This is poetry of grand appetites, longing to take it all in everywhere, to savor the rich sweetness of this world.
Jim Daniels

Ninety miles separate Cuba and Key West, Florida. Crossing that distance, thousands of Cubans have lost their lives. For Cuban American poet Virgil Suárez, that expanse of ocean represents the state of exile, which he has imaginatively bridged in over two decades of compelling poetry.
“Whatever isn't voiced in time drowns,” Suárez writes in “River Fable,” and the urgency to articulate the complex yearnings of the displaced marks all the poems collected here. 90 Miles contains the best work from Suárez's six previous collections: You Come Singing, Garabato, In the Republic of Longing, Palm Crows, Banyan, and Guide to the Blue Tongue, as well as important new poems.
At once meditative, confessional, and political, Suárez's work displays the refracted nature of a life of exile spent in Cuba, Spain, and the United States. Connected through memory and desire, Caribbean palms wave over American junk mail. Cuban mangos rot on Miami hospital trays. William Shakespeare visits Havana. And the ones who left Cuba plant trees of reconciliation with the ones who stayed.
Courageously prolific, Virgil Suárez is one of the most important Latino writers of his generation.

114 Pages, 6 x 9 in.

March, 2005

isbn : 9780822958802

about the author

Virgil Suarez

Virgil Suárez is the author of four novels, a collection of stories, two memoirs, and eight poetry collections, and he has coedited two anthologies with his wife, Delia Poey. Most recently he has published an anthology of Latino poetry titled Paper Dance. Suárez is the recipient of a fellowship in poetry from the National Endowment for the Arts and a recipient of a Florida State Arts Grant.

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Virgil Suarez