The Wardrobe’s Best Dressed: Learning to Love a Western Sky by Amelia Díaz Ettinger


This selection, chosen by Guest Curator Callista Buchen, is from Learning to Love a Western Sky by Amelia Díaz Ettinger, released by Airlie Press in 2020. 

Drowning in a Foreign Tongue

Do you know how it is to scream
against the scandal of ocean waves
tearing your lung—an invalid pen—
from the force of Anglican consonants
that weighs the tongue like foam
inarticulate,
that starves you to emaciation
suffocating noble feelings with
no voice, no resurrection
filling the space with
the grace of eloquence long lost?


Amelia Díaz Ettinger is a ‘Mexi-Rican,’ born in México but raised in Puerto Rico. As a BIPOC poet and writer, she has two full-length poetry books published; Learning to Love a Western Sky by Airlie Press, and a bilingual poetry book, Speaking at a Time /Hablando a  la Vez by Redbat Press, and a poetry chapbook, Fossils in a Red Flag by Finishing Line Press, in 2021. Her poetry and short stories have appeared in literary journals and anthologies. Presently, Amelia Díaz Ettinger is working on an MFA in creative writing at Eastern Oregon University in La Grande Oregon.

Callista Buchen is the author of the full-length collection Look Look Look (Black Lawrence Press, 2019), and the chapbooks The Bloody Planet (Black Lawrence Press, 2015) and Double-Mouthed (dancing girl press, 2016). Her work appears in Harpur Palate, Puerto del Sol, Fourteen Hills, and many other journals. She is the winner of the DIAGRAM’s essay contest and the C.D Wright conference’s Emerging Writer award, and is the founder of the Carlson-Stauffer Reading Series at Franklin College. 

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