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Ocean Power: Poems from the Desert (Sun…
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Ocean Power: Poems from the Desert (Sun Tracks)

by Ofelia Zepeda

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Beautiful set of lyric poems celebrating the language and culture of the Tohono O'Odham people of southern Arizona and northern Mexico. Zepeda is a linguist and wrote the first O'Odham grammar. Her sensitivity to language is apparent throughout. I loved the title poem, which Zepeda reveals in the afterword is based on the experience of two O'Odham men who were deported to Mexico and came to close to the ocean, a sublime and terrifying experience for desert people. ( )
  jalbacutler | Jan 10, 2017 |
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0816515417, Paperback)

The annual seasons and rhythms of the desert are a dance of clouds, wind, rain, and flood—water in it roles from bringer of food to destroyer of life. The critical importance of weather and climate to native desert peoples is reflected with grace and power in this personal collection of poems, the first written creative work by an individual in O'odham and a landmark in Native American literature. Poet Ofelia Zepeda centers these poems on her own experiences growing up in a Tohono O'odham family, where desert climate profoundly influenced daily life, and on her perceptions as a contemporary Tohono O'odham woman. One section of poems deals with contemporary life, personal history, and the meeting of old and new ways. Another section deals with winter and human responses to light and air. The final group of poems focuses on the nature of women, the ocean, and the way the past relationship of the O'odham with the ocean may still inform present day experience. These fine poems will give the outside reader a rich insight into the daily life of the Tohono O'odham people.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:14:27 -0400)

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