Tales from the House of Vasquez




Raquel Vasquez Gilliland

« Rattle Chapbook Prize Winner »

Tales from the House of Vasquez by Raquel Vasquez GillilandAfter giving birth to her son, Raquel Vasquez Gilliland had a nervous breakdown so severe her husband quit his job to help with the baby. Two years later, she examined the experience with poetry. Mental illness runs on her mother’s side of the family, with the Vasquez women specifically. As Gilliland searched for the reasons why these women suffered, she found stories. Some of these tales are from the lips of her mother, Maria Elena, and grandmother, Ofelia. Some tales are unearthed from the fertile dirt where poems grow. Put together, Tales From the House of Vasquez is an archetypal journey in verse.

Praise for Tales from the House of Vasquez

This book and its stories enthrall and embrace the reader. Welcome to parsley ghosts in the graveyard, motherhood that feels like your spine is forever on the outside, and seeing through multiple alchemical eyes. A brilliant invitation to the inside of a Mexican-American family! Highly recommend to any poet!
—Doren Damico , on Goodreads

Sample Poems

• “The Tale of the House of Vasquez” in Into the Void
• “The Tale of Kitchen Spirits” and “The Tale of Spice” in Luna Luna (online)
• “The Tale of the Earth” in Sheila-Na-Gig
• “The Tale of Called Magic” in Moonchild Magazine
• “The Tale of the Earth” in Rattle (online)
• “The Tale Postpartum” in Rattle (online)
• “The Tale of La Llorona” in Rattle (online)

Other Poems

• “Life on Earth” in Rattle
• “I Know All Mothers …” in Rattle

About the Author

Raquel Vasquez GillilandRaquel Vasquez Gilliland is a Mexican-American poet and painter inspired by folklore, myth, and plants. Her first book, Dirt and Honey, combines these focuses with themes of ecology and feminism and received the Jason Wenger Award for Literary Excellence. She holds a B.A. in cultural anthropology from the University of West Florida and an M.F.A. in creative writing from the University of Alaska, Anchorage. Her poems have appeared in Dark Mountain, Luna Luna, Rattle, Sheila-Na-Gig, and other journals. Raquel Vasquez Gilliland lives in New Jersey with her husband and son. (web)


Cover art by Raquel Vasquez Gilliland

ISBN: 978-1-931307-38-3
Cover price: $6.00
Chapbook: 28 pages
Size: 6″ x 9″