Alberto Álvaro Ríos (born September 18, 1952 in Nogales, Arizona ) is the author of ten books and chapbooks of poetry, three collections of short stories, and a memoir.
In August 2013, Rios was named Arizona's first state poet laureate, a position he held until 2015.
Here is what the review committee had to say about Rios.
“This candidate has impressive experience with community outreach, is a fantastic performer and speaker who is able to get people to think about poetry in a whole new way. Alberto is thoughtful in his community work and has proven himself to be a strong public figure and advocate for poetry in Arizona.”
They also offered, “Ríos was born and educated here in Arizona, and has contributed to Arizona communities for decades. If ever there was a poet who personified Arizona’s values, it is Alberto."
How gratifying for Rios to receive so many affirmations for his work.
The Sheet Music of Place
The river through its centuries has made a line on this place,
A child's line, wanting to be straight but distracted at every move,
A little left, a little fast, around a big rock, sliding straight away
Through sand, this crawling, leaden line echoing
The line made by the tops of the mountains in silhouette against the sky.
The railroad track makes another line, a double line-
The highway, too, and the telephone poles strung with wire.
All these lines work in sure if uneasy concert
Written on the arid air of this place, which has made everything
Dry and white,off-white, some darks but on their way to white,
All this landscape a great and delicate paper.
These lines make a musical staff borrowed from the world of dream,
The world that then fills these lines with its profundo notations,
The careful placement of one moving thing next to another,
The train engine and its cars-those drudging bass notes,
Birds everywhere in their thrill, 64th notes every one,
Everything scored onto the pages of this world suddenly heard.
Day and night, that ceaseless baton, unforgiving metronome:
Bees lumber along but their work is to stop, whole stops and half,
Busy at their honeying, these respites of work, these moments loud
Too-resting the ear so as to hear composed this place into music-
Every sound a new performance of the great song of this world.
Cook's notes: One of the things I liked about this recipe was using tricolor quinoa.
Though Chipotle uses white rice as its burrito bowl base, quinoa, offers far more fiber and protein. A favorite of mine is Bob's Red Mill Tricolor Quinoa available at Target and Trader Joe's carries has a similar organic product under their own label.
The tri color quinoa in a cilantro lime dressing mimics the Chipotle rice with a touch of cumin. Add diced grilled chicken, black beans, corn, onions, and tomato and you have one healthy dish.