Blue Coyote with Guitar and Other Songs is the first anthology to appear in English by the renowned Mexican poet, Juan Bañuelos (Tuxtla Gutiérrez, Chiapas, 1932). From its beginnings to its most recent manifestations, this poetry assumes a predominantly dissident stance. In both content and form, the poet’s craft is carried out against the tide of recolonization that has washed over his country since the mid-forties. Among the foremost elements of this alternative poetics is its rejection of individualism, one of the ideological pillars of modernization. Another key factor is the way it challenges the nationalism instrumental in the co-optation of the Mexican Revolution, one of the twentieth century’s most radical struggles, which, in turn, constitutes a questioning of the comprador class and its exclusionary national project. Lastly, it opts for the alterity of the most marginalized social subjects in modern Mexico, the Indigenous population, whose cultures increasingly determine Bañuelos’s poetic vision of the world, moving beyond contemplation and seeking participation.
‘The sign that corresponds to Bañuelos is Thunder…but it is not born from above, rather it sprouts from the Earth.’ —Octavio Paz, Nobel Prize in Literature, 1990
‘Bañuelos doesn’t go to the people, he is the people, from their place, from its humility and glow, from exploitation, hunger, poverty. Juan knows how to extract beauty and hope from everything, and that is a miracle.’ —Juan Gelman