Tell Your True Tale


Bird Man

By Richard Gatica

"... I spread the crumbs at the base of my door. The airflow passes over the pancake portion of the crumbs, reducing its moisture content. I scoop up all the crumbs, place them in an old tortilla bag and hide the bag in the folds of my prison-issued jacket – smuggling it to the yard the way many have done with shanks...."


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By Anonymous

"...We were then accused of making my Gramma “sleep on the floor,” and told that we were no longer allowed to take her to my Mom’s for overnight stays. Most heartbreaking was that my Gramma, who used to phone my Mom and I at least once a day, was not returning our calls. I missed hearing, “¡Ay te wacho!”


A Leaf in the Wind

By Sylvia Castañeda

"...Gradually, his absences increased from days to weeks to months, prompting the school director to fire him. Francisco was sighted in the cantinas or sleeping on the benches of the main square. Often, he would skip town. Antonia had to find work to support her family. Soon, she was sewing aprons at home for the town merchant. This money she earned kept a roof over their head and frijoles on the stove....


Warrior Daughter

By Fabiola Manriquez

"... Toward the end, I hated being near my mother and felt ill any time she expressed affection. She hated homosexuals. We argued. Gays deserved the AIDS virus, she said; they were sinning as God was working it out for them to repent. After those arguments, I visited the E.R. for a sedative. ..."


Sounds of Home

By Celia Viramontes

"...When he’d settled in, he opened the gifts. Swatches of cloth, clothes and a brown rectangular object spilled out. His daughter traced with her finger the letters engraved on the radio: P-H-I-L-C-O. That night, the voices of Pedro Infante and Lola Beltrán flowed from the speakers, singing of love and loss. ..."


Mabe’s Dream

By Tené Harris

"... Mabe had arrived in east Texas from Georgia, a freed man, in about 1859. He was a skilled carpenter, shoemaker, blacksmith and farmer. Over the years this man somehow amassed close to one thousand acres, 600 of which remain in our family. No one knew much about his parents. Some speculate that his father was a slave owner and that had something to do with his ability to purchase and retain so much land in east Texas. ..."


La Curandera

By Monique Quintero

"...I must have been about 2 years old when my parents and I stayed overnight at my maternal grandparents’ house. It was early morning, my parents were still asleep, but I was awake in my playpen. I looked up to see Angie standing in the hallway. As I called out to her, she turned and walked away. I managed to climb out of the playpen, but by the time I reached the living room, there was no sign of Angie. I later told my mother what had happened, to try to figure out how Angie had disappeared so quickly, but she just shook her head and told me, “You must have dreamt it. ...”