No hay peor palabra que la que no se diceThere is no worse word than that which is never spoken.

Enjoy a collection of autotopographies based on ancestral photographs, personal essays, memoirs, literary journalism  – themes of flowers, pride, dreams, food, family, death, dolls, secrets, words, voices, threads, two cities, the sea, sugar, paro…

The following is a collection of personal essays, memoir, and literary journalism but primarily autotopographies, a life narrative genre based on family/ancestral photographs. There are a variety of approaches to the genre, from mosaic, to reflection, to “as told to,” poetry, and even reinvented family stories. Much can be called, “subjective personal and communal history.” Each gives snapshot insights into what Puerto Rico was like a few generations ago, during its harsh and tumultuous past, as well as its “now,” in its uncertain post-colonial present. The stories not only illustrate family, tradition, community, language, and identity but also themes of migration, immigration, exile and otherness weave through the tales. The borderlands of Puerto Rico have their own world Diaspora – seeds from many lands, languages, religions, cultures reflecting through. Yet, they all share a commonalty which lends not only an ever expanding view of what it means to be Puerto Rican but also what it means to embrace living this Puerto Rican Life.

The greater part are written in English, the language of the colonizer and a second language to the majority of writers.

There are fourteen chapters. Each containing a range of stories loosely related to the theme. Click to enlarge any of these amazing images, many rescued and preserved from the ravages of hurricanes, termites, vermin, mold and humidity, reminding us that indeed, nature is always in control on this tiny island.

Enjoy & please leave comments for the writers!