Looking for the Gulf Motel

Family continues to be a wellspring of inspiration and learning for Blanco His third book of poetry, Looking for The Gulf Motel, is a genealogy of the heart, exploring how his family s emotion legacy has shaped and continues shaping his perspectives The collection is presented in three movements, each one chronicling his understanding of a particular facet of life from cFamily continues to be a wellspring of inspiration and learning for Blanco His third book of poetry, Looking for The Gulf Motel, is a genealogy of the heart, exploring how his family s emotion legacy has shaped and continues shaping his perspectives The collection is presented in three movements, each one chronicling his understanding of a particular facet of life from childhood into adulthood As a child born into the milieu of his Cuban exiled familia, the first movement delves into early questions of cultural identity and their evolution into his unrelenting sense of displacement and quest for the elusive meaning of home The second, begins with poems peering back into family again, examining the blurred lines of gender, the frailty of his father son relationship, and the intersection of his cultural and sexual identities as a Cuban American gay man living in rural Maine In the last movement, poems focused on his mother s life shaped by exile, his father s death, and the passing of a generation of relatives, all provide lessons about his own impermanence in the world and the permanence of loss Looking for the Gulf Motel is looking for the beauty of that which we cannot hold onto, be it country, family, or love.
Looking for the Gulf Motel Family continues to be a wellspring of inspiration and learning for Blanco His third book of poetry Looking for The Gulf Motel is a genealogy of the heart exploring how his family s emotion legacy

  • Title: Looking for the Gulf Motel
  • Author: Richard Blanco
  • ISBN: 9780822962014
  • Page: 228
  • Format: Paperback
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    1 thought on “Looking for the Gulf Motel”

    1. I picked up this collection because Richard Blanco was the poet at President Obama's second inauguration, and because we share a similar biography - both Blanco and I are the children of Cuban exiles who grew up in Florida; we're both gay; we both lost our fathers. It shouldn't be a surprise, then, that I saw myself here as clearly as if I were gazing into a mirror. I found myself dog earring like mad - and I'm the type of reader that regards the book as a sacred object, loath am I to defile it [...]

    2. Though work prevented me from watching President Obama's second inauguration, I made it a point to go on YouTube afterward and watch the inaugural poet. Prior to that moment, I had no familiarity with Richard Blanco. His reading impressed me, both the words and the dignity of his vocal style. Later, after listening to an NPR interview, I resolved to try his poetry.To be frank, Mr. Blanco uses a poetic style I tend to get cynical about. As I once told my Facebook friends, so much of contemporary [...]

    3. I’ve been wanting to read some of Richard Blanco’s poems ever since Obama chose him as the poet for the inauguration which brought his name to my attention. I’d liked the poems of his that I found on-line. He’s had three collections published and someone suggested that it might be good to start with his most recent ‘Looking for the Gulf Motel’. Very sensible advice as poets generally get better as they get older and more mature. I took `Gulf Motel’ with me on a trip to the West of [...]

    4. Beautifully sensitive and compelling volume of poetry about life's cycles: beginnings, growing, learning, disappointments, endings and then the inevitable transition into the next life. Unbelievably relatable and lyrically beautiful. I liked the title poem: Looking for the Gulf Motel, The Island Within, House of the Virgin Mary, Remembering What Tia Noelia Can't, Bones, Teeth and Burning in the Rain.

    5. I've started carrying this slim volume of poetry with me, just so I can reflect on the words whenever I have a moment. Blanco explores the search for identity, family and the legacy of time in this collection. Sometimes I am overwhelmed by the beauty of the words, or they trigger images from my own life. It's worth having on your shelf.

    6. I do not often read poetry but I liked Richard Blanco's story and that he was chosen to read at the second inauguration of Barack Obama. This slim volume was fun to read, though many of the pictures he paints with his words are melancholy as well as beautiful.

    7. Like Miami, Richard Blanco's writing is lush and seductive, crackling with a sophisticated sensuality.Blanco's prose glows like a slow burning Key West sunset in his newest book of poetry "Looking for the Gulf Motel." As in his other collections, Blanco escorts the reader on a rich spiritual journey of self-discovery as he seeks to understand his complicated Cuban past and present. For so many Cubans, the crocodile-shaped island is a virtual country, one that many generations can't help but wax [...]

    8. When Richard Blanco spoke at Union College in Schenectady this year, he mentioned workshopping his poems. Oh to be a fly on the workshop wall. (A talking fly, that is.) First, I would tell Richard that some of the poems in Looking for The Gulf Motel are dazzling perfection: 5:00 AM in Cuba, Practice Problem, and, most of all, the title poem. Moreover, I would admire the way the poems in this collection mesh to form a cohesive and moving coming-of-age story. Then, I would say something that poets [...]

    9. When I was growing up, I loved writing poetry but not reading it. And when I did read a whole book of poems by one author, it was Stanyon Street and Other Sorrows by the recently deceased Rod McKuen, called “the king of schmaltz” by the first website my Google search brought back. So when I say I really enjoyed Looking for the Gulf Motel, how much you can trust me? And if I say that the first Richard Blanco poem I heard was read from the pulpit of a Unitarian Universalist church, does that m [...]

    10. "I want to find the Gulf Motel exactly as it was/ and pretend for a moment, nothing lost is lost."2013 Presidential Inaugural poet Richard Blanco's most recent (third) collection of poems is a treasure. It's a book to read and go back to when you need this voice.Blanco's poems are about place (Cuba to Miami to Maine) and loss (his childhood, his father) and especially love (his mother, brother, friends and husband). These familiar themes are made new with the poet's crisp, accurate writing style [...]

    11. I am not usually a poetry fan, but I absolutely loved this book of poems. I saw him read his poems live and immediately bought this book. His use of language is beautiful, and the themes about establishing an identity as a gay man and as the son of Cuban immigrants in American society resonated with me. Some of his lines, like "there should be nothing here that I don't remember" perfectly capture the timeless desire for places of childhood memories never to change and the way we have to cope wit [...]

    12. OK, done with Richard Blanco. At this point in his writing he has moved to Maine with Mark. I wonder if they will get married now?He has many references and images of the ocean which endears him to me. He also writes about his father and how one's perception of parents changes and deepns as time moves. I can really relate to that. Thee are more relational poems as well. Again, his prose poems are well done and not a chore to read. Some favorites: "The Name I Wanted" brings in the influenc of Ame [...]

    13. I liked this well enough. I loved the interview that Blanco did on Fresh Air, and his poems sounded amazing when he read them. I got this from the library to peruse, but I don't think I'll be buying it for my collection. There were a number of poems I really loved, but some of the ones about his constant search for "home" didn't move me. I'm just not that full of questions about what is home, and I just didn't feel that his search moved me, for some reason. But I really adored -- Looking for The [...]

    14. Twice this week I have read a poetry collection straight through, no dilution, no chaser. Blanco was not on my list, because I wrongly suspected that a poet who had been asked to do the inaugural thing would be safe, ergo bland. Not so. Blanco writes with courage and detail that allows us into his life and the life of his Cuban immigrant family. He also lets us into his own domestic life. I particularly liked a poem called "Killing Mark," in which Blanco brings to light the experience of worryin [...]

    15. Pure identity poems - good thing "Mr. White" has an interesting identity! He's a gay Cuban American and this collection delves into all aspects of his ethnicity, sexuality, and manhood. It's a fascinating journey, but one is left wondering where he ended up - how comfortable can we be once we've distilled down the elements of our identity? I wish I knew myself as well as Blanco seems to, so confidently exposing all the contrarian behaviors and broken stereotypes. Admirable, but not particularly [...]

    16. Blanco uses a narrative style in this emotional biographical piece that touched and in some ways soothed me. I recognized and connected with many of his personal conflicts as the child of a loving, if tough and judgmental, immigrant Cuban family. I laughed in some places, but strongly felt his emotional anguish and nostalgia in others. This is a book I will definitely re-read.Complete review at Impressions of a Reader

    17. I had never heard of Richard Blanco before he became the poet at Obama's second inauguration. I really enjoy his poem that day, so I decided to check out his newest collection. I was blown away by how many poems jumped out from the page at me. Blanco is gifted with his words, and he brings a passion to his topics and invites his readers to share in his experiences.Favorite poems:Betting on AmericaSitting on my Mother's Porch in Westchester, FloridaQueer Theory: According to my GrandmotherMy Fath [...]

    18. One of the last squares remaining for #bookbingonw2017 was a collection of poetry. Not sure where to start, I recalled the national poet laureate when Obama was inaugurated in 2008 was a Cuban American. A quick search turned up this evocative collection filled with stories of Blanco's childhood, and of his exiled extended family who dream of the land they loved and left. The poems are complete pictures of a time and place elegantly rendered.

    19. I'm happy that President Obama exposed the nation to Richard Blanco. I was so moved by his reading at the inauguration, I immediately sought out his other work. My favorite poems are always those that leave me with conflicted emotions. This collection did precisely that - I began to read the namesake poem to my husband and found myself unable to finish, bursting into tears. That's the best compliment I can give.

    20. When Richard Blanco, a fellow Maine resident, read a poem at President Obama's second inauguration, I was impressed by his words and his delivery. This 2012 collection of his poetry is lovely. Think of these poems as short stories. They describe his life and the lives of members of his family, immigrants from Cuba. Blanco vividly presents ideas that speak to our relationships with our family and the places of our childhood.

    21. Richard Blanco, "made in Cuba, assembled in Spain, imported to the United States" he says. Civil engineer, poet, immigrant. 2012 Presidential Inaugural poet. Everyone has a Gulf Motel in his or her life. "There should be nothing here I don't remember." A must read, his collection of narrative, lyric poems.

    22. Beautiful. Unassuming. A few pieces felt exploratory/formulaic. But they're outweighed by several that are quite stunning. The rest feel easy and graceful. Overall, they render a complex relationship with immigrant identity and family, exile and nostalgia, finding and making home, history, and love/loss.

    23. I liked this one better than his first, but Directions to the Beach of the Dead is still superior in my view. There are standout poems for me in this one, like Queer Theory according to Abuela and the one about wishing his name were Richard instead of Ricardo. He is a universal poet in my opinion.

    24. If you've lived in Miami, you will relate and laugh with this collection of poems.If you've had a special place in your life, gone back to it and it's changed you'll recognize yourself in it.If you've had cultural differences in your view on life and those of your parents, you'll appreciate Blanco's ability to recap his experiences in a manner that is poignant and very readable.

    25. April is National Poetry Month. I have become a really big fan of Richard Blanco. His prose poems have an almost short, short story quality to them. My favorites from this collection: Queer Theory: According to My Grandmother, Birthday Portrait and Since Unfinished.

    26. Full of longing for childhood, the approval of family, and the memories of a country that fully is a part of who you are though all your memories are possibly second-hand. Lovely. And somewhat painful.

    27. This collection of poems is wonderful. He is a gifted poet who allows to experience place and time with our senses.

    28. "Killing Mark" might be one of the best love poems I've ever read--maybe because I can relate so well to the speaker's irrational anguish and anxiety!

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