A Narco-Acid Western told in a series of interlinked poems, Soto’s striking debut collection follows the converging paths of two protagonists through El Sumidero, a fictional US/Mexico border town where an ongoing drug war is raging. The surreal verse of Soto’s poems portrays a bleak political climate as it coincides with the rituals of love & loss, culture & spirituality, & the quest for a better life at all costs. Following the narrative arc of Alejandro Jodorowsky’s classic cult film, El Topo, A Grave is Given Supper builds a world saturated with a mystical aura that describes the finite tensions & complicated desires of lives taking place in the borderland.
"The landscape in A Grave is Given a Supper recalls the tones of Frank Stanford, steeped with our phantasmagoric Texan borderlands. Soto offers up each poem like a votive candle, wreath of roses, or weapon, to lay on the altar of the outlaw Jesus Malverde, announcing the arrival of a new literary voice." - Fernando A. Flores, author of Pig Latin and Stuck on a Razor
"Soto drives a relentless narrative from poem to poem... a narrative composed of equal parts joy and rage." – The Literary Review
“Soto eases into discomfort and renders it stunning.” – Katy Dycus, The Wild Detectives
“There is a deep, inescapable sadness in many of Mike Soto’s poems but it is a sadness for the world and never himself. It’s wrong to stereotype poets, even positively, but I think Soto’s Mexican literary heritage is deep in his bone marrow. It’s a rich, earthly, mystical tradition in which to have one’s taproots. These poems of light and life are compressed, but never crushed.” – Thomas Lux