Margaret Randall
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Writings and Books

Latest addition : 27 July.

Fragment of poetry reading at Bihl Haus, San Antonio, January 2015. Video made by Tania Romero. Thank you, Tania!

Poetry reading at the University of Arizona in Tucson, February 13, 2014:

My brand new book on Che Guevara, CHE ON MY MIND, is just out! See cover and details at:

Doug Valentine interviews Margaret Randall for Counterpunch:

Jonah Raskin also interviewed me about CHE ON MY MIND. Read his piece in The Rag at:

My new single-poem chapbook, DAUGHTER OF LADY JAGUAR SHARK, is just out from Wings Press. Once again, Bryce Milligan has produced a gem of an edition; he designed, hand-printed, and hand-bound the little volume that also contains 15 full-color images. It can be ordered directly from the publisher at:

My most recent collection of essays, MORE THAN THINGS, is just out from University of Nebraska Press. You can order at:

AS US February 14 issue just out, with many great contributions:

UTNE READER features BORDER SONGS: A COLLECTION OF MUSIC AND SPOKEN WORD (an exciting new CD to benefit No More Deaths / No Mas Muertes). At the following link you can hear Glenn Weyant’s sound engineering accompanying my reading of "Offended Turf":

Read poems by me and others at Connotation Press: An Online Artifact

Sound engineer and all-around genius Glenn Weyant was in Albuquerque for the Cultural Conference 2012. He taped me reading my Wings Press chapbook, WHERE DO WE GO FROM HER?, then set the recording to his haunting music. You can listen to the collaboration at:

Panel on the Borderlands, held at Barnard College, New York, in September of 2011

Read my "Coyote Grin" in PERSIMMON TREE, an on-ling literary magazine for women over sixty (the writers are over sixty, the readers of all ages!). Go to

Richard Vargas interviews Margaret Randall prior to launching of Margaret’s new book RUINS (The University of New Mexico Press) at Alamosa Books in Albuquerque, Sunday, August 13, 2011. To read the interview, published in The Duke City Fix: click here

To order a copy of my new bilingual limited edition of AS IF THE EMPTY CHAIR / COMO SI LA SILLA VACIA, just out from Wings Press, go to:

To hear Margaret Randall and Roxanne Dunbar-Ortiz at La Peña in Berkeley, California, March 23, 2011, Talk on Cuba, go to and click on the recording. This was made possible by The Women’s Desk at Making Contact.

Go to New Mexico Poets Page:

View new five-minute short version of the film about EL CORNO EMPLUMADO / THE PLUMED HORN here:

Read "Offended Turf," my poem about the border experience, and see three photographs from the border area at

  • My Town: A Memoir of Albuquerque, New Mexico in Poems, Prose and Photographs

    Nothing was What it Pretended
    Words I’d never heard took up residence in my mouth. Montaño, even if city signage refused to put the tilda over the n, names like De Vargas, Cabeza de Vaca or Juan Tabó, shepherds and assassins enshrined on street corners unquestioned and mispronounced.
    Indian words like Acoma, Navajo—now Diné— or place names like Canyon de Chelly the conquerors left us with when they couldn’t speak what they couldn’t hear.
    Names imposed: Oñate, Coronado, Santa Fe. Another’s holy (...)

    Everyone Lied
    We wanted to make the world a better place but everyone lied, fought power with humble flesh, blood, brilliance, and the luck of the innocent.
    The enemy’s lies assaulted us, their language diminished our numbers, turned us against one another, touched lovers, confused our sense of who we were and why.
    And we lied about them, claimed they were drug dealers and murderers, all their food poisoned, all their streets unsafe. Then we lied about our own, sowed serious doubt, set (...)

    Bilingual limited edition of 400 numbered and signed copies. Spanish translations by Leandro Katz and Diego Guerra. Photographs by Annabella Balduvino and Margaret Randall
  • Beneath a Trespass of Sorrow (Poem by Margaret Randall, Maps by Barbara Byers)

    Wings Press, San Antonio, Texas 2014

    We love and nourish one another, live together, and for each of us our art is the focus of the physical space we inhabit: two working studios side by side. So it is only natural that from time to time what one does motivates an ekphrastic response in the other. Like the proverbial chicken and the egg, though, we would be hard put to say who is influence, who responds. Rather, in Bodies/Shields, as in our earlier Beneath a Trespass of Sorrow (both chapbooks beautifully produced by Wings (...)

    Ernesto Che Guevara occupies a place in our emotional iconography unsurpassed by anyone with the exception of Buddha, Mohammed, Marx, Mary or Jesus of Nazareth. Still contemporary—his death at thirty-nine isn’t yet half a century behind us—he is a figure revered in equal measure by both convinced revolutionaries and apolitical youth at the farthest reaches of our planet. All see in him a symbol of nonconformity and resistance. And, like so many humans we’ve embalmed in myth, scholars and those (...)


    Do I Get Out of Bed This Morning?
    Memory moves across a map like the lines in a face spread and deepen, souring testimony to the smile gone, the unheard laughter and cheek offered up for a kiss that will not come.
    Skin fades imperceptibly, its colors hesitate unsure if they will cling to heat or sink to the pale pulse of resignation. Do I get out of bed this morning yet again? Do I wash my face? Do I (...)

    Daughter of Lady Jaguar Shark
    I am still here, daughter of the great city, Tikal, counter of days, apprentice to scribes grinder of maiz the liquid brown of chocolate on my tongue.
    Daughter of Lady Jaguar Shark, artist, traveler to Copán, Chichén , Palenque, carrier of copper, shells and light.
    Transparent as air and from a place your eyes cannot enter I watch as you wander this time I still call home . . (...)
  • First Laugh: Essays 2000-2009

    Pumping Gas
    Again I am somewhere else. Or everywhere at once. But as always, every word has its color. Sometimes, when I lose one now, the color rises behind my eyes but the word still plays hide and seek. Taunts me from the sidelines. Or a vast rainbow looms, and I must find my way through hues and the language they mask. Sometimes I sit for long minutes sifting through color on my way to word. Word may try to resist, but synapse eventually takes me home. I am seventy-three. My father (...)

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