All posts tagged: ensayo

Looking for Moths Under the New Moon

Esto es una traducción del ensayo, “Buscando mariposas bajo la luna nueva en El Yunque“, publicado el 12 de marzo de 2021 en la revista 80 grados. This is a tranlsation of, “Buscando mariposas bajo la luna nueva en El Yunque“, published in 80 grados on March 12, 2021. I was thinking of two things while walking: that my legs could not hold me anymore and that I wanted to see a coquí, Puerto Rico’s endemic frog. We had been within the green labyrinth of El Yunque, Puerto Rico’s tropical rainforest, for almost four hours. Although I wanted to look up and appreciate the plethora of stars, I kept my gaze down so that the flashlight on my head would light the way. Falling down on one of those paths, full of rocks and roots, while carrying a backpack full of scientific equipment, is not a pretty picture. There were times when I slipped, but still had not fallen. I was in the back of the line, walking slowly to see if I could spot …

Buscando mariposas bajo la luna nueva en El Yunque

Read the English version here. Este ensayo fue publicado en 80grados el 12 de marzo de 20201. Iba caminando y pensando dos cosas: en que ya no aguantaba las piernas y en que quería ver un coquí. Llevábamos casi cuatro horas bosque adentro en El Yunque. Aunque quería mirar hacia arriba y apreciar el revolú de estrellas, tenía la mirada hacia abajo para que la linterna en mi cabeza iluminara el camino. Caerse en una vereda de esas, llenas de piedras y raíces, mientras se carga un bulto lleno de instrumentos científicos, no debe ser bonito. Hubo ocasiones en que resbalé, pero aún no me caía. Yo iba atrás en la fila, caminando lento para ver si lograba ver un coquí, pero sin perder el paso del equipo. “Mira, Luis”–dijo Aura al ratito. Y allí estaba, tranquilito en un tronco, listo para la foto. Luego de eso, ella nos pidió que apagáramos las linternas.

My Unstructured Structure and the Meadow of Flowers

This is the final reflection written for the University of Vermont course, “Writing Across Disciplines”, taught in spring 2020 by Dr. Caitlin B. Morgan. The essay was written in May 2020–Thus, when it says, “this semester”, “now”, etc., it refers to January-May 2020. In the start of the semester, I wrote that I would focus my efforts on writing a piece centered on a food systems story for my Writing Across Disciplines course. Moreover, I stated that I would allocate time for daily writing. Now in the future (May 2020), which, like Luis Rafael Sánchez says, “always comes dressed as the present”, I can say that I have not followed my plan thoroughly. I wrote the food systems piece, but it has yet to become what I want it to be. I allocated time for work, but found myself often not writing on such times. Nevertheless, I have written what I wanted or what I was assigned to write. In this present-future I can say that my structure is an unstructured one, and it works. …

On Not Suffering (Much) in Graduate School: Part 2

Presiona aquí para leer la versión en español. I wrote a piece in 2018 about the strategies and habits that helped me go through my terrible first year of graduate school (2017). I started that piece with a verse by Sol Fantin: The problem of time is not that is short, but swift. Time has passed, and what I wrote is still valid. It is important to know why we want a PhD or Masters before throwing ourselves in, to be informed about the place before arriving, and to develop a meaningful relationship with your advisor. Moreover, one should create healthy habits, and build a community of friends and people that support one another. Here I expand on that list with new strategies, and I reinforce some that I mentioned in 2018.

Para no sufrir (tanto) en la escuela graduada: Parte 2

Click here to read the English version. En el 2018 escribí una pieza con el fin de compartir estrategias y hábitos que me ayudaron a sobrellevar mi terrible primer año de la escuela graduada (2017). El escrito comienza con un verso de Sol Fantin: El problema del tiempo no es que sea corto, sino fugaz. Luego de dos años, todavía sostengo lo que escribí. Hay que saber para qué se quiere hacer un doctorado o maestría antes de tirarse la maroma. Y por supuesto, es importante conocer el lugar antes de llegar, lograr una buena relación con tu asesora, incorporar hábitos saludables, al igual que crear una comunidad de gente amorosa que se apoye una a las otras. Aquí quiero expandir esa lista con nuevas estrategias y reforzar otras mencionadas en el 2018.

Quería involucrarme en las protestas del verano, pero me encontraba lejos de Puerto Rico.

Esta es la versión en español de la columna que me publicó la revista Science. La puedes acceder aquí. Fue publicada el 29 de agosto de 2019. Estaba solo en mi cuarto, pegado a la computadora, viendo la marcha y las manifestaciones que se estaban llevando a cabo en el Viejo San Juan. Estaba a casi 3,000km de distancia de mi natal Puerto Rico, donde el Pueblo le exigía la renuncia al gobernador Rosselló. Recuerdo sentir mucho orgullo, pero también rabia hacia mí por no estar allí. 

Being Idle is not an Option: Reconciling my Academic and Political Duties

This is the original version of my Working Life Essay published on Science on August 29, 2019. Click here to read the published version. It was Wednesday, July 17th, and I was alone in my room, in front of my computer with four windows open on the screen. Thousands of Puerto Ricans were marching to Old San Juan that day, demanding governor Rosselló to resign. The leak of the egregious chats between him and his colleagues was the catalyst that motivated people to take their bodies to the streets. Beyond dehumanizing comments, the governor used the chat for political means, a potentially illegal action. Furthermore, and worse, in my opinion, they sneered on those who died because of Hurricane Maria. I stayed up late every night following what was happening. I wanted to talk with all my friends that were marching; with one dear friend of mine who suffered police violence during these protests. Day after day, I was following the news from the time that I woke up; feelings of anger and angst in …

On Not Suffering (Much) in Graduate School: Part 1

Oprime aquí para leer la versión en español Sol Fantin, Argentinian poet, writes that the problem of time is not that it’s short, but swift. My friends know that I mention that verse all the time. Last August 28, 2018, was my anniversary as a PhD student at the University of Vermont. My intention for doing a PhD stills the same: to become an independent researcher. We must remember that to have a PhD is just that: to have a PhD. So, what do we want to do with that degree? Why we need it? It’s very important to answer those questions before embarking on such a mission. I started my PhD in food systems at UVM very excited, but it hasn’t all been very beautiful.

Para no sufrir (tanto) en la escuela graduada: Parte 1

Click here to read the English version of this post on the steps I took to lessen the suffering before, and during my PhD track. La poeta argentina, Sol Fantin, dice en uno de sus poemas que el problema del tiempo no es que sea corto, sino fugaz. Ese verso siempre lo tengo en la punta de la lengua. El pasado 28 de agosto del 2018, cumplí un año como estudiante doctoral. Mi intención para realizar un doctorado yace en mi interés por ser un investigador independiente. Recordemos que tener un doctorado es eso: tener un doctorado. Ahora, ¿qué queremos hacer con él? ¿Por qué lo necesitamos? Es bien importante tener eso bastante claro antes de tirarnos la maroma. Comencé mi PhD en sistemas agroalimentarios en la Universidad de Vermont con mucha emoción, pero no todo ha sido de colores que me gustan.