Julia Alvarez: official author website
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The Woman I Kept To Myself

(Chapel Hill:
Algonquin Books, 2004)

This is my first collection of poems in nine years! But the poems gathered here are ones I have been writing all along as I work on other books. For me, poetry is that cutting edge of the self, the part which moves out into experience ahead of every other part of the self. It's a way of saying what can't be put into words, our deepest and most secret and yet most universal feelings. I actually started writing these poems in thirty lines as a birthday poem for my fortieth birthday. A way of assessing where I had come from, where I was going. But after I had thirty poems together, and my fortieth birthday had come and gone, I kept writing. I thought, well, I'll write forty poems for my fiftieth. . .

The Woman I Kept To Myself: book of poetry by Julia Alvarez see this book on
or you may be able to get an
autographed copy at
Vermont Book Shop

At any rate, these seventy-eight poems are the meditations of a woman trying to understand this moment in the middle of my life by looking back with new perspectives at my younger years and looking ahead at the unknown I have to sing to understand. . . What more can I tell you? As I said, poetry is how we say what can't be put into words or into short e-summaries, either.

further reading: Interview with Julia Alvarez in Latina Magazine, April 2004


New and Collected Poems

(New York: Plume, 1996)

My first love has always been poetry. This collection is actually a reissuing of Homecoming, published in 1984 by Grove Press, now out of print. All the old poems from the first edition are here as well as newer work. I wrote an afterword for this second edition, recalling how I freaked when this, my first book, was published. I wanted to go out and buy all copies of the book before anyone could read it. I laugh now, but it reminds me how terrified we women were in the not so long ago past to have public voices.

further reading: "Traditional Form and the Living, Breathing American Poet," Fred Muratori -- an essay on contemporary sonnets including "33," in New England Review and Bread Loaf Quarterly, pp. 231-232, Winter 1986
Homecoming: New and Collected Poems by Julia Alvarez
see this book on
or you may be able to get an autographed copy at
Middlebury College Bookstore or Vermont Book Shop

The Other Side/El Otro Lado

(New York: Dutton, 1995)

Although this book includes some shorter lyrics, most of it is made up of two longer, narrative poems: "Joe," which follows a failed love affair; and the title poem, "The Other Side," a kind of female Odyssey in which a woman with a trail of failures in the U.S.A. returns to her childhood homeland and ends up living in a small fishing village on the other side of all she knows.

The Other Side/El Otro Lado a book of poetry by Julia Alvarez
see this book on hardcover  *  paperback
or you may be able to get an
autographed copy at Vermont Book Shop
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Autographed Books by Julia Alvarez

Would you like a signed -- or personalized -- copy of one of Julia's books? Simply call or email one of her two local bookstores -- or stop in for a visit.

Vermont Book Shop
38 Main Street, Middlebury, Vermont

Middlebury College Store
58 Hepburn Road, Middlebury, Vermont
Contact Georgia Best

And, of course, Julia would love to see you at one of her upcoming appearances. To see if she will be in your town, check her calendar.


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