Winner of the 2016 Helen C. Smith Best Book of Poetry Award from the Texas Institute of Letters, and named one of eight must-read books by indispensable small presses by NBC Latino.
Dedicated and addressed to the poet’s grandfather, A Crown for Gumecindo is a heroic crown of sonnets that chronicles the first year of grief experienced due to the loss of the family patriarch. Through 15 linked sonnets, journal entries, and meditations, Guerrero reexamines the lessons she inherited, both intentionally and unintentionally, through the careful dissecting of the multigenerational, multilingual, and multifaceted male-female relationship. Also examining the role of the writer, Guerrero draws upon various histories—personal, social, literary—in order to expose the uncertainties encountered in a time of mourning. Visual artist and poet Maceo Montoya also draws upon his histories, contributing 15 paintings inspired by Guerrero’s sonnets that offer readers a layered experience of the tender and often shocking revelations of grief.
Praise for A Crown for Gumecindo
“Wrought from both love and anguish, Guerrero, one of our finest lyric poets…invites us to the complex and dense universe of familial bonds.”
—Carmen Giménez Smith, author of Be Recorder
“Guerrero skillfully shapes the sonnet to build a crown of memory, tenderness, and grief for a man who becomes more than a man in this collection… Gumecindo, in these poems, becomes our beloved, our grandfather, the carpenter and king of our broken hearts.”
—Natalie Diaz, author of Postcolonial Love Poem
Published by Aztlan Libre Press.