A House of My Own: Stories from My Life (Vintage International)

A House of My Own: Stories from My Life (Vintage International)

Language: English

Pages: 400

ISBN: 0345807170

Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub


From Chicago to Mexico, the places Sandra Cisneros has lived have provided inspiration for her now-classic works of fiction and poetry. But a house of her own, a place where she could truly take root, has eluded her. In this jigsaw autobiography, made up of essays and images spanning three decades—and including never-before-published work—Cisneros has come home at last. Written with her trademark lyricism, in these signature pieces the acclaimed author of The House on Mango Street shares her transformative memories and reveals her artistic and intellectual influences. Poignant, honest, and deeply moving, A House of My Own is an exuberant celebration of a life lived to the fullest, from one of our most beloved writers.

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woman said. —Just you wait. See you later. And so it happened that a house did appear, not only one she fell in love with, but one that was for sale and at a price she could afford, without even a realtor. She was terribly frightened, but her agent and her accountant gave her ánimo, which is like courage but with a push. It was a house with a mesquite tree alongside dancing an arabesque and a pecan tree in front that dropped its fruit on the roof in the autumn like coins—plunk, plunk—and a

life in sizzling pinwheels of green, white, and red—el verde, blanco, y colorado—for the Mexican flag, but also, I believe, for the holy trinity of Mexican cuisine—chili, onion, tomato. Guadalupe begins to turn, slowly at first, a despedirse, to say goodbye, as is only proper. Then the Holy Virgin gains speed, pirouetting like an Olympic ice skater, whirling into the night sky, disappearing for a second before exploding like a dandelion and plummeting back to earth in a magnificent blessing of

during the day. It’s no wonder I had trouble concentrating on that other world inside my head. In September I stuffed my unfinished manuscript in my suitcase and kissed Provincetown goodbye. I didn’t know when I was coming back, but I knew I wouldn’t be the same on my return, thank God. If there was anyone I needed to get away from, it was me. Credit 1.2 At home in Provincetown just before leaving for Greece I wanted my life to change. After grad school I taught high school, then worked as a

part of the jungle to the other. Father stopped at a place called Akumal so we could rest. It was nothing more than a few thatch-roofed palapas with hammocks strung up and a quiet lagoon rimmed by palm trees. I was lucky enough to be wearing my swimsuit, or I might not have ventured in. The water was calm and still. I lay down at the shallow lip of water and land where the sand, ridged and soft and firm at the same time, settled into the contours of my back and neck. The water, warm as a body,

lapped at my earlobes, and the trees set a dappled light waving the sunlight gently over me as if giving me a cleansing. The waves, slow and calming, murmured things I didn’t need to understand for now. I shut my eyes. And I felt something that has come and gone in my life at odd times without my asking. A sense of detaching from myself, of sliding out of myself and connecting with everything in the universe. Of being empty so I could fill up with everything. And I wondered if dying was like

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