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The Smallest Muscle in the Human Body

Copper Canyon Press • 2002

“In this latest poetry collection by Ríos, a veteran poet and story writer and professor of English at Arizona State University, the speaker focuses squarely on childhood experiences and memories. In poems that are typically prosy ('I was born in Nogales, Arizona/ On the border between/ Mexico and the United States'), the animating thoughts often far outweigh linguistic exploration, as in a meditation "My Chili": 'When you bite chili,/ You are not biting chili./ With its own teeth and its own tongue/ for taste,/ The chili, after all,/ is biting you.'” — Publishers Weekly

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