Shadows & Supposes


by Gloria Vando

ISBN: 978-1-55885-360-7
Publication Date: April 1, 2002
Bind: Trade Paperback
Pages: 112

A new poetry collection by an award-winning Puerto Rican poet.


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In Gloria Vando’s tender ode to making bread, she writes, “I . . . remember you always / in the act of kneading . . . To give bread / is an offering of love . . .” Like the subject of her poem, Vando artfully creates love and life, kneading the happy, the painful, victory and tragedy with her pen, shaping her own offering of love. Her second collection of poetry, Shadows & Supposes explores themes of love, loss, personal history, global history, and family.

Her poems craft a world of shadows: the remnants of Europe in the wake of World War II, the Vietnam soldier haunted by the photograph of a child, and the blood tax exacted from Puerto Rican Americans during the Vietnam War. And through it all, the shadows are enhanced by the supposes: her daughter’s encounter with death at the Museum of Natural History and Vando’s own musings on life and death.

Shadows & Supposes is a tour de force by one of the most mature and sane voices in poetry today, who, despite pondering the ultimate questions, finds purpose even in tragic false starts and detours.

Named to the Latino Literary Hall of Fame for Best Poetry Collection in 2004

“I’m impressed…by the clarity of the work, its range of subject matter, and the willingness of the poet to push the premises of the poem at times beyond the bounds of the safe and careful…”
David Mura, Judge for the Alice Fay Di Castagnola Award

“Through language that lingers on the tongue and in the heart, you get to re-live your own life anew as you savor the voices of Gloria Vando in this vibrant new poetry collection.”
Al Young, poet, author and editor of African American Literature: A Brief Introduction and Anthology

“Intelligent, crafted, compassionate, with a sharp eye for the absurd and the unjust, the poetry of Gloria Vando should be savored like a good meal.”
Martin Espada, author of City of Coughing and Dead Radiators: Poems

GLORIA VANDO is the author of Promesas: Geography of the Impossible (Arte Público Press, 1993). Vando’s verse has received critical attention claiming various awards, among them: the 1998 Poetry Society of America’s Alice Fay DiCastagnola Award; the 1998 River Styx International Poetry Prize; the 1994 Thorpe Menn Book Award for Promesas; and was a finalist, in the Walt Whitman Poetry Contest. Vando is the founder and editor of the important journal Helicon Nine, which received the Governor’s Arts Award, Kansas, and Helicon Nine book editions. She and her husband Bill Hickok are co-founders and administrators of The Writers Place in Kansas City, Missouri.