Born of a Mexican father and a British mother in the border city of Nogales, Arizona, Alberto Ríos has lived his life between cultures. He extends the metaphor of in-betweeness to language, claiming that he speaks three languages: Spanish, English, and a combination of the two. This linguistic richness gives Ríos’s verse a touch of magical realism, as in his collection Whispering to Fool the Wind.
More By This Poet
I grew up on the border and though I left
I have brought it with me wherever I've gone.
Its line guides me, this long, winding thread of memory.
The border wasn't as big as they say—
It fit neatly behind my eyes and...
We Are of a Tribe
We plant seeds in the ground
And dreams in the sky,
Hoping that, someday, the roots of one
Will meet the upstretched limbs of the other.
It has not happened yet.
We share the sky, all of us, the whole world:
Together, we are a tribe...
Rabbits and Fire
Everything’s been said
But one last thing about the desert,
And it’s awful: During brush fires in the Sonoran desert,
Brush fires that happen before the monsoon and in the great,
Deep, wide, and smothering heat of the hottest months,
The longest months,
The hypnotic, immeasurable...