Tropico, Marcela Huerta’s debut collection of poetry, tackles grief, memory, and the experiences of a second-generation immigrant. The daughter of political refugees from Chile, Huerta shares memories of her recently departed father, who becomes a symbol for Chilean culture and leftist resistance after his passing. Through the intimate detailing of everyday occurrences, Tropico reveals how intergenerational trauma disrupts childhood and lays bare the lived effects of American imperialism.
Cover art | Sidney Masuga
ISBN | 978-1-988355-07-8
“Marcela Huerta sifts through crumpled photos, family stories, and the past—both remembered and imagined—that tethers her to another place, scented by terror and sorrow. In these beautifully observed poems, the mundane and the cataclysmic tumble together, burnishing a daughter’s grief. With exquisite tenderness, Huerta writes her father back into being.”
– Kathleen Oliver, author of Swollen Tongues
"Huerta clearly describes the ambivalent love one can have for a father, the back and forth between being proud of a parent but having to protect yourself from them, between being at once always too close and always too far. Huerta's words never try to reconcile this attraction and repulsion. Instead, they let them both exist in the complexity of grief, like blunt and rational facts, creating a vibrant homage to her father."
– Julie Delporte, author of Journal and Everywhere Antennas
Marcela Huerta is the author of Tropico, a collection of poetry and creative nonfiction published by Metatron Press in 2017. Her work has been featured or is forthcoming in vallum, Peach Mag, Leste, ALPHA, Bad Nudes, Montreal Review of Books, spy kids magazine, CV2, and Lemon Hound. She is the Poetry Editor at carte blanche magazine.
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Drawn & Quarterly | "Tropico is all the best parts of the memoir, the poem, and the short story. Marcela has crafted a careful but uncompromising testament to how families can at once soothe and hurt each other, and how one can hope to cope with that lasting pain."