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University of Montana Press

Let's call it by its Algonquin name:
"he strips off"
                            or, if you will,
"the sage" or "respectful one." Not a twig
left on top of another, not a single flower
sticking out from the prairie.

Someone (perhaps a hunter)
once said it was ugly,
that its snout and antlers were too big,
that it was ungraceful and dumb.

When the moose hears this,
it just shrugs its shoulders
and munches quietly on the water lilies
or the tree bark.

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Eduardo Chirinos is an internationally acclaimed voice in Latin American letters and the author of ?fteen books of poetry as well as volumes of academic criticism, numerous essays, translations, children’s books, and occasional pieces. He was born in Lima, in 1960, studied Hispanic linguistics, acquiring a bachelor's degree from Pontificia Universidad Católica del Perú, and a PhD in literature.

He is currently a professor in the department of Modern and Classical Languages and Literatures at the University of Montana, specializing in Latin American Literature, Modernism, Avant-Garde, Spanish and Latin American Contemporary Poetry. "Moose" was published in his collection titled Written in Missoula.

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