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The Empress of Frozen Custard & Ninety-Nine Other Poems by Jorge Guitart

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The Empress of Frozen Custard & Ninety-Nine Other Poems Jorge Guitart BlazeVOX [books]

Jorge Guitart’s poetry is not for the masses but it is for everyone. The Empress of Frozen Custard is awash in marvels. Guitart is a master of language, a tongue trickster, a feller of fashion.  In this, his second volume of English poetry, he has done it again, producing a collection that sings and laughs and cries all at once.  In the words of Yankee fans praising one of their most beloved players, “Hip, hip, Jor-gé!”

Pablo Medina
Author of The Cigar Roller and Professor of Fiction and Poetry, Emerson College


The poet, the linguist, the foreigner in the multilingual metropolis of the mind, Guitart writes as if each stroke were a cosmic stretch, a cognitive Asana of sorting, slipping, hearing and mishearing. This is a poetry that is clever, fortified but not drunk on puns and wit. Chiaroscuro or oscurochiaro, the Straits of Florida or Estrecho de la Florida, a quotidian Baroque of angle aged words whirl our worlds. Antiphonal energy takes on a see-saw ride of Looney Hymns and Nutty Psalms to intense, witty reworkings of William Blake and Wallace Stevens. In Guitart's 100 poems, tongues tattle adjusts the lamp of language, so we can hear.

Kenneth Sherwood
Associate Professor of English, Indiana University of Pennsylvania




Jorge Guitart was born in Havana, Cuba, in 1937, and early on he decided that his favorite subjects in school were Spanish grammar and English. They continue to be central to his intellectual life. In 1962, not wanting to live any longer under a Leninist dictatorship, he moved to the United States. He was not a stranger to American culture, having followed the New York Yankees since childhood and memorized great chunks of American pop music lyrics in addition to being a devotee of Mad Magazine in the Harvey Kurtzman era. In the mid-sixties he developed an interest in contemporary U.S. poetry and began to write poetry in English as well as in Spanish. Guitart’s first collection of poetry in English was Foreigner’s Notebook (Shuffaloff 1993), and in 1996 his long cyclical poem Film Blanc was published as a chapbook by Meow Press. He has also published in print and electronic journals. He has translated U.S. poets into Spanish (e.g., John Ashbery and Gabriel Gudding) and Latin American poets into English (e.g., José Kozer and Eugenio Rodríguez). He obtained a Ph.D. in Spanish linguistics from Georgetown University in 1973 and is Professor of Spanish at the State University of New York at Buffalo. He is widely published in the fields of Spanish phonology and Spanish grammar, and has been a visiting professor at the University of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania State University, the University of Massachusetts, Middlebury University, and several Latin American universities.  

Book Information:

· Paperback: 120 pages
· Binding: Perfect-Bound
· Publisher: BlazeVOX [books]
· ISBN: 9781935402374

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