Biography
Víctor Manuel Mendiola was born in Mexico City and is the editor and Publisher of Ediciones El Tucán de Virginia, which has printed over 200 books of poetry of which over a 100 are bilingual editions of non-Mexican poets. He is on the editorial board of the magazine NEXOS. He was an artist in residence at the Banff Art’s Center in Canada. He is also a member of Mexico’s Sistema Nacional de Creadores and President of PEN Club de México (1997-2000). He has published essay on poetry and Mexican painting in magazines and literary supplements such AS EL SEMANAL, VUELTA, EL SEMANARIO, CUADERNOS HISPANOAMERICANOS, LA JORNADA and REFORMA. He was awarded a grant from the Sistema Nacional de Creadores in 1997. He was the director of the festival Letras del Mundo en Tamaulipas Festival Internacional as well as directing other festivals in the country. His books of poetry include: VUELO 294 (1997); LAS 12:00 EN MALINALCO (1998); PAPEL REVOLUCIÓN (2000); LA NOVIA DEL CUERPO (2001); TAN ORO Y OGRO (antología, 2003), for which he received the Latino Prize for Literature; and TU MANO, MI BOCA (2005). He has published three books on Hispanoamerican poetry and has also edited several anthologies, most recently EL CORAZÓN PRESTADO, EL MUNDO PRECOLOMBINO EN LA POESÍA MEXICANA DE LOS SIGLOS XIX Y XX (2005) and LA MITAD DEL CUERPO SONRÍE, ANTOLOGÍA DE LA POESÍA PERUANA CONTEMPORÁNEA (2005). The Rockefeller Foundation awarded Swanscythe press a grant to publish a bilingual anthology of Víctor Manuel Mendiola's poetry in the United States.

Whiteness

- by Victor Manuel Mendiola (Translated from the Spanish by Jennifer Clement)

When making love
I think your body’s whiteness
loses meaning over
the whiteness of mine
as if it were useless
to have one color dissolve
over the same color.

But one minute later I understand
that the rising pallid waves
of our bodies
do have meaning.
This is because, when they find each other,
Our bodies are the landscape
of such a quiet sound –
mobile still waves.
And I understand that we hold tight
in the same way
that a windowpane
tightens under the wind’s pressure
to shatter in an embrace
of splinters and cracks —
fragmenting
in a silence of water and air
within our flesh
in the night of the room.

And I understand that it has meaning
to break your mirror
against mine
to see
my feet or find your mouth
in the broken, reunited pieces,
in the whitest repetition
of our bodies.