New Episode: Bonnie Ilza Cisneros
Bonnie Ilza Cisneros is a fourth-generation educator in a line of Tejana school teachers. Bonnie holds an MFA from Texas State University, is a member of Macondo Writers Workshop, and was awarded a NALAC artist grant in 2018. She received an 2023 Individual Artist Grant from the City of San Antonio to archive, exhibit, and celebrate Siempre Verde: Música for Feeling & Healing, an interdisciplinary pandemic project at Evergreen Garden. Bonnie is published in El Retorno, Chicana/Latina Studies, River Teeth, El Placazo, Porter House Journal, La Voz de Esperanza, Contemporary Creative Nonfiction and has a seven-tiered matrilineal essay in a forthcoming anthology entitled Somos Tejanas (UT Press). Moonlighting as DJ Despeinada, she spins all-vinyl soundscapes of the borderlands. Bonnie curates cultural events, teaches workshops, presents lectures, records radio shows, publishes zines, crafts rasquache style, builds altares, and raises two m’ijas with her musician/carpenter husband in San Antonio, Texas. Her digital archive is www.bonniecisneros.com.
June 4, 2022
In this episode Daniel talks with international best selling fiction writer Mariana Enriquez. From Buenos Aires, Argentina, she writes what might best be described as literary horror stories, which are translated into multiple languages. She often takes us into dark and horrible spaces and situations, but she does it with a skillful narrative voice and compassion for her characters. They talk about her writing process, the difference between writing short stories and writing a novel, and the effect of psychogeography on how she travels and generates story ideas. They mostly speak of her collection of stories entitled, in English, The Dangers of Smoking in Bed, or Los peligros de fumar en la cama.
The Best of Words on a Wire
Daniel Chacón speaks with celebrated poet, essayist, editor, activist, novelist, and translator Ana Castillo, about her most recent poetry book, My Book of the Dead (University of New Mexico, Press, 2021).
Tracy K. Smith
Daniel talks with Pulitzer Prize-winning poet, Tracy K. Smith. She has written her first memoir, Ordinary Light, and she talks about why she waited many years to write about the death of her mother. She also explains why the memoir allowed her to explore the subject of race and to reflect on how her parents lived and coped in the segregated South.
Benjamin Alire Saenz
Benjamin Alire Sáenz visits us in Studio B to discuss his recent work. Dr. Sáenz taught as a professor in UTEP’s Creative Writing department for over twenty-three years before retiring to dedicate his time entirely to writing and there was so much to discuss, Dr. Sáenz is being featured in a special two-part edition of Words on a Wire.
Edward Hirsch speaks with Words on a Wire about his latest book, A Poet’s Glossary, which is not so much a book of definitions as it is an exploration of the history of the terms and how those terms interrelate to each other. Hirsch explains why it took 15 years to compile the information for this book, and why he believes it can still be more expansive (it’s already over 700 pages long). We’ll learn about the terms “Duende,” “Flarf,” and “Spam Poetry.”
Juan Felipe Herrera
Juan Felipe Herrera previously served as the Poet Laureate of the United States. Before that he was Poet Laureate of California. And before that he was a Fresno poet who was inspiring the dreams and imaginations of thousands of children, their parents, and fellow poets. Herrera joins us again on WORDS ON A WIRE to talk about his Laureateship and how his life has changed (and how it hasn’t) since he was appointed Poet Laureate of the U.S. in 2015.