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Artist Profile

PABLO MIGUEL MARTÍNEZ

Artist's Statement
Toni Morrison once said: “I wrote my first novel because I wanted to read it.” Poets and writers who share Morrison’s sentiment write because the literature they crave—-often born of a desire to see oneself and one’s community in the work one reads—-does not exist. This, then, is the impetus for my as yet untitled project, which is based on both the ‘official history’ of the Bracero Program, as well as the little known individual stories of the braceros, their families, and their communities. While a relatively large body of research on braceros is available to scholars, there is little, if any, creative writing that uses the workers’ lives as its focal point. The book-length poetic sequence I am proposing aims to change that.

While much of my work is informed by identity politics (Chicano, gay, tejano), it is also shaped by the experience of going through a rigorous MFA program. And though this might suggest a straddling, or ‘in-between-ness’ (the state of nepantla, to use Gloria Anzaldúa’s historical reference), it is a fusing that clearly, accurately reflects my reality. At a time when many artists of color routinely eschew what they regard as the limitations of identity labels (“Don’t call me a Latina writer—-I’m simply a writer,” goes the increasingly standard introduction), my work is proudly, unabashedly, unapologetically rooted in who I am, which is to say, it’s rooted in all the splendor, terror, beauty, and pain of those who came before me. This is what I intend to capture and pay tribute to in my manuscript.


Literary Arts Samples

 
The Grotto
Poetry, 2007
Published in New Millennium Writings in 2007

 
Yours
Poetry, 2008
Two poems from a series of persona poems. "Yours, Malinalli" published in Texas Poetry Review.

 
Printer's Devil
Poetry, 2008
Published in SA Express-News in 2008.

 
Poem Beginning with a Line by Louise Glück
Poetry, 2007

 
A Brief History of the Texas Rangers
Poetry, 2006
Published in SA Express-News in 2006.

 

 
 
     
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