The Blue Mimes: Poems (Paperback)

The Blue Mimes: Poems By Sara Daniele Rivera Cover Image
usually available in 3-5 business days


Sara Daniele Rivera’s award-winning debut is a collection of sprawling elegy in the face of catastrophic grief, both personal and public. From the lead-up to the 2016 presidential election through the COVID-19 pandemic, these poems memorialize lost loved ones and meditate on the not-yet gone—all while the wider-world loses its sense of connection, safety, and assurance. In those years of mourning, The Blue Mimes is a book of grounding and heartening resolve, even and especially in the states of uncertainty that define the human condition.

Rivera’s poems travel between Albuquerque, Lima, and Havana, deserts and coastlines and cities, Spanish and English—between modes of language and culture that shape the contours of memory and expose the fault lines of the self. In those inevitable fractures, with honest, off-kilter precision, Rivera vividly renders the ways in which the bereft become approximations of themselves as a means of survival, mimicking the stilted actions of the people they once were. Where speech is not enough, this astonishing collection finds a radical practice in continued searching, endurance without promise—the rifts in communion and incomplete pictures that afford the possibility to heal.

About the Author

Sara Daniele Rivera is a Cuban/Peruvian artist, writer, translator, and educator from Albuquerque. Her poetry and fiction have been published in literary journals and anthologies. She was awarded a 2017 St. Botolph's Emerging Artist Award and won the 2018 Stephen Dunn Prize in Poetry. Her drawings, sculptures, and community-based installations focus on text-in-space as social intervention, and her public art projects are often developed in collaboration with youth.

Praise For…

“Sara Daniele Rivera’s poems are fractals of home, landscape and beloveds. They begin in losses and end and begin again in rhythmic half-details. English wraps to Spanish in which grief is constantly pulsing, breaking every turbulence into pattern. Rivera writes ‘I want to believe death is only a pause / in our continuous language.’ As readers, we accompany the poet in her search for endurance. The Blue Mimes is a beautiful collection, pointing us to look in tender directions, and figuring a gestalt made from contemporary terrors and the plainsong of ancestors.”—Lauren Camp

“This collection of 27 poems is bursting with sound and light, even as it reckons with a multitude of griefs, both personal and public.” —Sara Beth West, Shelf Awareness

“Through different forms and frames, Rivera’s poems traverse feelings while rearranging the wounds. . . . Rivera’s code-switching, the alternating possibilities offered in the poems happen comfortably, though not necessarily in a comforting way. But the speaking endures.”—Lúcia Leão, RHINO

Product Details
ISBN: 9781644452790
ISBN-10: 1644452790
Publisher: Graywolf Press
Publication Date: April 2nd, 2024
Pages: 72
Language: English