cover of book

Autobiography of a Yaqui Poet
by Refugio Savala
edited by Kathleen Mullen Sands
University of Arizona Press, 1980
Paper: 978-0-8165-0628-6 | Cloth: 978-0-8165-0698-9
Library of Congress Classification F1221.Y3S28
Dewey Decimal Classification 970.00497

This is the major literary achievement of a sensitive, gifted man. The author is a Yaqui Indian, a railroad gandy dancer who sees beauty in iron spikes and rail clamps as well as in twilight-purple mountains and glossy-leafed cottonwood trees. In the seventy years following his flight from the Yaqui-Mexican wars in Sonora, Savala became a talented poet and loving recorder of his people's cultural heritage. A large sampling of his original works appears in the interpretations section of this book. Together with the beautifully written autobiography, they offer a unique view of Arizona Yaqui culture and history, railroading in the American West, and the personal and artistic growth of a Native American man of letters.
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