Pachuco Skull with Sombrero

Los Angeles, 1970

by Lawrence Welsh





Price and Format: 
$10 paperback
Page Count: 
Publication Date: 
April, 2018
Publication Status: 





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Unlikely Stories is delighted to present the eleventh book by grandmaster poet of the American Southwest, Lawrence Welsh: Pachuco Skull with Sombrero: Los Angeles, 1970. With cover art by Emily Spencer, Pachuco Skull with Sombrero: Los Angeles, 1970 will take you across the desert and back again with gorgeous expressions of tragedy, violence, bravery, and loss. Check out the Preface/Homage by Belinda Subraman, with quotes from the book:

He doesn’t separate himself from the land
where his word rodeo comes alive.

“o god if we move
and talk like birds
say the whippoorwill
and desert wren”

No gecko scuttles in front of him without notice
on a cosmic cellular level.

“how the poor and broken
how their faces
grieve again
and long for some touch
like the wood for a coming
cross or coffin”

His desert sun is always glaring
spotlighting his perceptions.

“when arrivals leave
from other rooms
i realize she’s gone
with only a scream now
for her own
for my own
new beginning”

At his best he’s like the arid land
bringing life, to words, against all odds.

“until all i see
is sun and light
sun and light
and pray for
a moving on”

His memories are maps to everywhere.
“those who feel
the steel
recognize those
who touch
are that much closer
to home”

Warm breezes swirl with metaphors.
“almost ash in the desert:
the relentless sun
and stillness of wind
and no wind.”

He spits errant grit from his dust blown mouth
“let us know
without knowing
let amputations or sullen disease
revolve and become
a universal occurrence
and a universal kiss”

and continues walking to his destination.
“that only owls
mesa wolves
and coyotes may see.”

His writing’s deepest beauty is connection.


And check out these pages from the book: