¿Que quiere decir ‘Brownsville’?
Sarah Fisch takes a look at Bárbara Renaud González’s new book Golondrina, why did you leave me? in her essay ¿Que quiere decir ‘Brownsville’?: Identity lost and found in the borderlands, in this week’s SA Current:
“Golondrina, why did you leave me? is the epic saga of Amada (i.e. “beloved”, which seems an appropriate nod to Toni Morrison — indeed, of the skeleton of literary influences within this novel, Morrison’s the spine), a flawed and intelligent mexicana who abandons her family and emigrates to Texas, where her (second) Tejano husband, Lázaro (i.e. “risen dead guy from the Bible”) and their kids (one of whom, a daughter, is the narrator) wander through the mythic Texas landscape and ruminate on the Lone Star State’s complex and often-violent history. Lázaro and Amada search for work and love, try like hell to keep the family together while suppressing secret loves and shames, and give each other no end of trouble y lagrimas. The title is taken from corridos and love poetry, which often lament the golondrina, a type of small sparrow, flying away across la frontera.”