From the Bellybutton of the Moon and Other Summer Poems / Del ombligo de la luna y otros poemas de verano
By Francisco X. Alarcón
Illustrated by Maya Gonzalez
From the Bellybutton of the Moon is renowned poet Francisco X. Alarcón's fresh collection of 22 bilingual poems inspired by his touching recollections of childhood summers in Mexico.
With a poet's magical vision, Alarcón takes us back to his childhood when he traveled with his family to Mexico to visit his grandma and other relatives. We travel with him in the family station wagon, across the misty mountain range to the little town of Atoyac. There, in the beloved town of his ancestors, we hear his grandma's stories, sample Auntie Reginalda's tasty breakfasts, learn about the keys to the universe, and take playful dips in the warm sea.
The lighthearted illustrations of Maya Gonzalez perfectly capture the spirit of summer in Alarcón's Mexico where "colors are more colorful, tastes are tastier, and even time seems to slow down."
Audio Podcast with Francisco Alarcon and Maya Christina Gonzalez
Watch Francisco Alarcon's interview with Reading Rockets
For educator resources and ideas on how to teach From the Bellybutton of the Moon in the classroom, click here.
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was a renowned poet and educator, and a three-time winner of the Pura Belpré Author Award Honor for his bilingual Magical Cycle of the Seasons series of poetry for children. His many other honors include the American Book Award, the PEN Oakland Josephine Miles Award, the Chicano Literary Prize, and finalist for state poet laureate of California. Alarcón was also the author of several poetry collections for adults and textbooks for teaching Spanish. In addition, he directed the Spanish for Native Speakers Program at the University of California. Alarcón passed away in early 2016.
is an award-winning children’s book artist, author, activist and progressive educator. Maya's work addresses systemic inequity in relation to race/ethnicity, sexism, and cissexism using children’s books as radical agents of change and healing, both personally and culturally. Maya co-founded Reflection Press, a POC, queer and trans owned independent publishing house that uses holistic, nature-based, and anti-oppression frameworks in their books and materials for kids and grown-ups. Maya is also the creator of the Gender Wheel, a tool to express the dynamic, infinite and inclusive reality of gender, and provides lectures and workshops to educators, parents and caregivers. Visit Maya online at mayagonzalez.com.