¿How Many Indians Can We Be?
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"East Indians, Mestizas, and Native peoples are the threads that weave Gutiérrez y Muhs' lovely bilingual collection ¿How Many Indians Can we Be? What her poems seek to do is conjure the connections aligned with the suffering of the colonized familiar. By doing so Gutiérrez y Muhs develops other ways of seeing in which the connections prove resilient in the light of such violence. More so, Gutiérrez y Muhs' hopefulness celebrates a woman's capacity to create under such conditions. Xochiquetzal may have been the patron of weavers, but it is Gutiérrez y Muhs whose words weave cadences of bilingualism, colorful nuances of cultural exchanges in an unforgettable fabric of poetry."
-Helena María Viramontes, author of Under the Feet of Jesus and Their Dogs Came with Them
"Arising from a trip to India, the poet, Gabriella Gutierrez y Muhs, lyrically examines the legacy of colonialism on two continents. She subverts the Columbus discovery narrative as she, a Chican@, meets Indians in India and falls in love with the music, the landscape, the people, the languages. These multilingual poems express exuberance at the shared humanity while acknowledging shared traumas wrought by oppression, cultural colonization, and migration. As an immigrant from India, I find these poems moving in their shared tribute to our discovery of each other's cultures."
-Nalini Iyer, author of Roots and Reflections: South Asians in the Pacific Northwest
"These poems that chatter, connect, and copulate have been written with the precise hands of a poet who by her very nature multiplies and easily welcomes us in. I can't read the poem 'Foreign' without tears welling up for its truth-telling and in a way that's absolutely unique to this poet, and it's hardly the only poem in this collection that demonstrates Gutiérrez y Muhs is a curandera of poetry, a proprietor of myth. I'm startled to find in these poems so much that has been lost. On a quest for a currency of culture, she also gives readers a currency of love."
-Patrice Vecchione, author of My Shouting, Shattered, Whispering Voice: A Guide to Writing Poetry & Speaking Your
Truth and co-editor of Ink Knows No Borders: Poems of the Immigrant and Refugee Experience
"Gabriella Gutiérrez y Muhs' candid prose and soulful translanguaging is a rare find. Este poemario es un caleidoscopio de paisajes, pensamientos, personas, personajes, costumbres, vestimentas, rituales, y voces que la poeta recoge a través de su viaje por India y por su memoria histórica como india, chicana, mestiza, atravesada. Gutiérrez y Muhs epitomiza el encuentro subalterno del que nos habla Spivak, ese translanguaging e intersección de códigos que alienan al sujeto occidental para darle lugar a la voz desde un espacio intersticial, desde las borderlands de Anzaldúa. This poetry collection is for lxs atravesadxs. It is una nueva palabra vieja, una voz que hace eco en las Antiguas, un huehuetlahtolli, un florecimiento de ritmos, in xóchitl in cuícatl. Sweet, melodic, audacious, and irreverent, Gutiérrez y Muhs gifts us a decolonial perspective that exemplifies our Xicanx literary tradition. ¿How Many Indians Can We Be? is an encuentro de almas, un apapacho, an embracement of the other that is us."
-José Juan Gómez-Becerra, Ph.D., Eastern Kentucky University (Aztlán)