Poems of Reckoning and Hope
Original trade paperback $16.95 |150 pp |ISBN: 978-1-59719-099-2 | Ebook $6.99 | ISBN: 978-1-59719-100-5
Also by Félix Garmendía
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Into the Heart of the Storm
We meet Félix again after he has been settled in Washington Heights for years with his husband, Denis. He and the neighborhood and Fort Tryon Park are pleased with each other. With Denis, he and his wheelchair Purple Raven swing around the park, the streets, the building, and the apartment in all seasons.
However, events foment and dispel ease and hope, and Félix bears witness to some of the most frightening occurrences of the last fifty years: the disinformation, lies and bigotry of a feral, out-of-control administration, the explosion of racism of many kinds, the pandemic, and last but not least, the storming of the Capitol. Through the eyes of a master poet we watch exhausted healthcare workers exit hospitals, still wearing their equipment, to a universal round of applause, played out differently in every New York neighborhood. We see Black people murdered by triumphant, smirking police. We shiver with anger at the blend of authoritarianism and misinformed rage that almost guts the heart of our democracy.
And yet through it all, through Félix, we also somehow find the grace and courage to laugh and find our own oases of hope.
Because of his Inclusion Body Myositis, Félix has become adept at typing with one finger. He has also become incredibly, enchantingly adept at capturing the mood of a year, a day, a season, a place. As in his first poetry collection, Flying On Invisible Wings, Félix sculpts with words the very heart of his wishes, hopes, failings and cares. But here they are often the wishes, hopes, failings and cares of a nation, as well.
With Félix, we emerge from the deluge that the last few years have brought into our lives.
We find the calm place again.
Praise for Poems of Reckoning and Hope
“I first encountered Félix’s work when a mutual friend, also a poet, met me and my husband when we were in NYC at a convention, and gave us a copy of Flying on Invisible Wings. I once was told that poetry is painting pictures with words. Félix paints entire stories with his poetry. His artistry shines through his poetry and shares a life story that is ongoing, creative and often painful. I have since gotten to know him on social media, though I was sorry that I did not know him when I was in NYC because I would have loved scooting up to Washington Heights and hanging out. He often posts his poetry on social media, along with gorgeous pictures of his life, his fashion sense, his artwork and his adventures wheeling around his neighborhood.
“I was delighted to hear he is publishing a new volume of poetry, and honored to get a taste of the new poems before they are published. If that bite is any indication, he is continuing to share a life well lived through his beautiful expression of narratives. My favorite among the new poems, so far, is “Body, Art and Mind,” as it not only begins with a reference to Frida Kahlo—whom I have come to associate with Félix because of his vast collection of Frida-related memorabilia—but also reminds me that Félix was a teacher of art as well as a practitioner.
“As a sociologist who appreciates narratives of the human condition, as an amateur poet who loves painting pictures with words, and as a fellow sufferer of living with chronic ailment and disability, I admire Félix’s honesty and generosity. In a world where much is not right, it is a better place for having someone like Félix in it, sharing his life with all of us through his art of language.”
Pattie Thomas, Ph.D.
Sociology professor, College of Southern Nevada
co-author of Taking Up Space: How Eating Well and Exercising Regularly Changed My Life
“Félix Garmendía is a friend whose presence in my life is a rare gift.
My copy of Flying on Invisible Wings, the first volume of Félix’s collected poems,
rests on the nightstand beside my bed. I read from it nightly,
and Félix’s reflections on his own life—how he has met the challenges facing him,
with positivity, determination, and a will to succeed—allay my personal fears and self-doubts,
enabling me to sleep peacefully and to awaken each morning
with renewed hope for the future.
I invite everyone who needs reassurance in these troubled times
to join me in reading his second book, Poems of Reckoning and Hope.
Dr. Dennis A. Lichty
Professor of Education,
Dean of Education & Counseling, Retired
Wayne State College
Winner, 2022 Rainbows in Chariots Award
for outstanding LGBT cultural contributions from those with different abilities
“for making beautiful rainbow contributions to photography and poetry;
for confirming those LGBT cultural workers in wheelchairs, prostheses for arms or legs,
those who are blind or deaf, or have other disabilities
are indeed major pioneers of LGBT culture and heroes of our time;
for confirming that LGBT culture is a mighty weapon
against homophobia, intolerance, ignorance, invisibility and silence;
and for proving the fact that when the colors of the rainbow are stretched over
geographic and psychological barriers, they grow not weaker but more brilliant
for any one willing to look up to the sky.”
Tupilak (Nordic rainbow culture warriors)
& the International Lesbian and Gay Cultural Network (ILGCN)