Thursday, April 26, 2018

New Book! Lucy Griffith - A Burro And A Broke-In Hat

Praise for A Burro and a Broke-in Hat, by Lucy Griffith

“Burro speed is just right.” It’s perfectly right for these nineteen poems by Lucy Griffith, dedicated to Judy Magers, the iconic Burro Lady who died at roadside near Sierra Blanca, Texas in 2007. In verse that evokes the rhythmical clop of hooves on asphalt, Griffith traces Magers’ quixotic life as “La Reina,” wandering roads of the thinly populated, arid region of Far West Texas where a swaying hawk becomes a manta ray in wide blue sky, where “a broke-in hat with a big brim” provides a roof. When a dust storm hits, the defiant Magers challenges it: “piss your grit at me/ and rasp my skin.” These poems are a testament to Magers’ independence, endurance, and love for her last burro, Merle. While she may be compared to a medieval pilgrim, a mere eccentric, or a female Don Quixote, readers are cautioned to respect her individuality in the poem “La Reina”: “do not lay your story over mine.” We won’t, thanks to Griffith’s inspired story-telling.
- Marilyn Westfall, Ph.D., poet
A Burro and Broke-in-Hat is beautiful book about love—love of the stark and austere land and the remarkable woman who made her life in it. Lucy Griffith gets to the heart of the enigmatic Burro Lady, Judy Magers, who roams through West Texas, living her life on her own terms. She is determined to be self-reliant and independent, even seeking to pay the state for the grass her burro eats on the side of the road. In the Burro Lady’s voice, Griffith tells us that La Reina is “full of thousands of sunsets, and brimming with stars in a quiet so still, I hear my heartbeat.” We find her in this gorgeous collection of poems not only through the voice of the Burro Lady herself, but also those of who came to know her: her legal guardian, the narrator, a goatherd, even her burro and a yucca.
Lucy Griffith not only “paint[s] the wind for me,” but paints the Burro Lady alive with her imagery and deftly created characters. Heed Griffith’s words, “You are unbound; take your time,” as you enjoy this gorgeous book of poems.
- Gloria Amescua, author of What Remains…

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1 comment:

  1. I am trying to find a copy of A Burro and a Broke-in Hat by Lucy Griffith. Can you help me? Thanks, Darlene Crain


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