Cardinal in My Window with a Mask on Its Beak
A first-generation immigrant to the United States, Aguasaco embraces his transborder/transnational/intercultural identity by building a bridge across time and distance to unite the great voices of the Renaissance with his lyrical poems. The collection offers bold and fascinating dialogue with Spanish authors such as Juan Boscán, Francisco de Quevedo, Garcilaso de la Vega, and Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz. The poems examine the fundamental liberties inherent to humanity through stunning verse. In a quest for freedom, the poems openly criticize the treatment of immigrants in the United States, drawing poignant parallels with human rights abuses throughout history.
Cardinal in My Window with a Mask on Its Beak brings potent voices of the past to life in poems that critically examine the present and future of the human experience.
“Cardinal in My Window with a Mask on Its Beak takes the reader on a journey through the surreal and the melancholic to inventive scenarios like an encounter between Stein and Vallejo going to the movies, to the heartbreaking stories of sideshow attractions where bodies are stripped of their humanity. Yet this book reaches beyond surprising premises and literary inspirations to arrive at a place where the poet also finds wonder in everyday encounters and solace in the sobering knowledge that everything comes to an end, but not before dispelling its magic upon the world: like that red bird mirroring the masked face during the pandemic, like the arresting language of the poet that will eventually succumb to silence. Each poem in this exquisite collection brings a startling (and necessary) revelation about our aches, follies, and mortality to light.”—Rigoberto González, from the 2021 Ambroggio Prize citation