Tongues Magazine Issue Four 2004

From the editors... Stacy Macias for Tongues

As we hurl this fourth issue into print just in time for our upcoming release party, it's a good moment to reflect on our vision as Tongues while placing this issue into a politically and culturally relevant context that considers this contemporary historical moment.

Gloria Anzaldua, one of our most beloved Chicana tejana lesbian feminist scholarly activists wrote in her pre-eminent text Borderlands/La Frontera that homophobia - the irrational fear of LGBT people - is actually about "the fear of going home," "and if going home is denied me, then I will have to stand and claim my space, making a new culture..." Sadly, we invlke these powerful words not only as a testament of our dedication to "go home" and "claim space" here in these pages of our long awaited fourth issue, but also in memory and veneration of Anzaldua, who passed away on May 15, 2004 from complications related to diabetes.

I can fondly recall the process of choosing a name for this magazine, webzine, and organization, and just how influential Anzaldua was in our formation. "How about 'Las Locas!'" "No, no, no I got it! 'Torti-Dykes!'" In the end, we chose "Tongues," a variation on a chapter from Borderlands/La Frontera titled "How to Tame a Wild Tongue" where Anzaldua discusses the silencing practices and the enforcement of English only as a form of linguistic terrorism, forms of violence that leaves us wounded and invisible. By choosing our name, we came to meditate on "Tongues" as the symbol of our rhythmic instrument that communicates our realities and unleashes our desires; gives voice to the traditionally silent and epitomizes our sensuality; and mobilizes our communities and makes and shares erotic pleasure.

As a co-editor of This Bridge Called My Back: Writings By Radical Women of Color, Anzaldua changed the way we think about our idenitities as queer women of color, both situating and validating our personal and political struggles with our sexuality, ethnicity, language, class, and family. She also offered us hope by helping us to understand and face our fears of "going home" while theorizing the resisting and surviving mechanisms that we develop. Unltimately, she gave us back our "tongues."

Anzaldua not only played a critical role in catalyzing our effort, but her intensely personal writings have influenced so many other efforts toward ending the subordination of the most marginalized members of our society like US third world women, queer people of color, and immigrant populations. Her untimely passing at the age of sixty-one reminds us of the legacy of struggle and resistance from which we come and provides a proactive challenge to continue engaging in strategies, debated, and acts of resistance so that all of us may have access to spaces where we may feel whole and complete as much in our political and cultural producations as in our enactments of love and desire.

Through my experience in Tongues, I feel fortunate to have been able to make and go to my own home, or safe space, by creating and becoming part of a group of self-identified queer women of color who are unapologetic about who they are. To new readers, we hope Tongues Magazine will be one of those community safe spaces integrated into your everyday life as a site of resistance and survival that you can claim as your "home" as well. To our continued readership, we know you recognize the unique nature of this space and thank you for your commitment - you are its lifeline and source of survival. To everyone, please (re)visit Gloria Azaldua's resonant words and light that candle in her honor. We will miss you deeply, Gloria.

While the tone of this issue appears a bit somber with themes related to rituals of loss and healing, cycles of change, and a reality check that lesbians do get HIV/AIDS, we have also aimed to strike a balance with a few more light-hearted, whimsical pieces that remind us to laugh and sing because the sun arises, even when it's out of our immediate sight. Happy Reading from all of us at Tongues!





Tongues Magazine Issue Three 2003

Editorial. Stacy Macias for Tongues

Welcome to the third edition of Tongues Magazine! We are thrilled to offer you another edition of a magazine envisioned, produced, and suffused by Queer womyn of color. We continue this effort in the tradition of our past two issues: telling and sharing the critical, intimate and creative stories of Queer womyn of color extending from Los Angeles and beyond.

As in our previous issues, we also employ Tongues Magazine as a tool of complication to 'trip up' conventional understandings of society and events. As the main U.S. power structure justifies, through anti-democratic means, the initiation of war, we are compelled to use this space as a declaration of our commitment to advocating peace and justice where people are placed above politics.

The declaration of our stance, however, is not enough. What is your stance? What is your action that speaks to that stance? When each person individually makes an effort to express an opinion in public, write a senator, or talk with a conservative family member, she becomes a powerful ingredient to exposing and undermining the profit-driven motives of this country's few elite and powerful. And, when the collective manisfestations of our resistance are experienced, our power becomes transformative.

Beyond a magazine, we are an orgaznition; beyond an organization, we are part of a community of Queer womyn of color attempting to make a difference. As unoriginal a that may sound, instigating change is our primary purpose. We believe change, or transformation, happens internallly and externallly on different scales. We chanllenge you to find your internal scale: heart, head, or spirit, for instance, and your external scale: self, home, or neighborhood, from which you are ready to work or continue to create change. This alone is a radical act of change; one in which we hope you will engage and then share with us in an upcoming edition!





Tongues Magazine Issue Two 2002

From the editors... Stacy Macias for Tongues
This issue brings another exciting herstorical moment as we move across genres and subjects to provide you all with the second issue of Tongues Magazine: "Lesbian Activism from Latina America to Los Angeles." As in our last issue, our goal is to engage your mind, body, spirit and heart on the surface level of reading and enjoying the magazine to taking that knowledge and insight on a deeper level to transform it into action, activity and activism! Don’t let the stunning art or evocative poetry and prose immobilize you-there is a lesson to share, a story to retell, information to learn, and wisdom to gain from each page, passage and creation.

This issue is a testament to the idea that there is no singular formula or definition of "activism;" we are all activists when we take steps to live healthy, be critical of our choices, emancipate our imaginations and then share what we newly know. The theme of this issue demonstrates the vitality of the activism we currently are doing across our varied communities and calls for a critical reflection of the collaborative work we still need to do. Whether as stakeholders in the educational system or purveyors of artistic expressions, the contributors represent the visibility and urgency of our struggles and the need to proactively engage each other to learn and become involved in the world around us.

At Tongues, our continued need to articulate the injustices and marginalization practices in our society, in our cities, and in our own communities also reminds us that we must share the successes of our creative energies, rebellious spirits and strategic intellects. In a constantly shifting environment, we remain dedicated to mobilizing communities to action, creating spaces to provide and support our intellectual and spiritual transformations and challenging society to see us-Queer womyn of color-in our different ages, shapes, genders and interests. If you do not see yourself represented here, we invite you to make an inquiry or submission by emailing us at Everyone has her own story—please do share yours!

Tongues Magazine Issue Two 2002 Contributors:

Gina Aparicio was born and raised in the urban working class jungles of Los Angeles. A CSUN Chicana/o Studies student. As a Political Activist turning Artist, she states, ”I began creating "art" in order to give voice to some of the social and political issues of our community while simultaneously spreading cultura.”

Cathy Arellano is a San Francisco-born, Mission District-raised writer. Her poems were published in the most recent issues of San Francisco State University’s journals Fourteen Hills and Cipactli, as well as in ALLGO’s Newsletter. She has taught creative writing to young people for four years.

Brenda Chavez is a writer at heart, and a Columbia Law student by day.
Lucila Chavez Castorena is a bisexual Chicana, Loteria loving, pozole addict from Boyle Heights. She recently graduated from UCLA in History and Chicana/o Studies and is looking forward to teaching in the near future.

Tatiana De La Tierra is a colombiana girl who became a writer & librarian & wild woman.

Mia Dominguez is a proud Chicana feminist lesbian residing in the San Fernando Valley. She has a piece of erotica entitled, "Who's that Girl?" published in Alyson Publications "Skin Deep", and has also had work published in "Philogyny Magazine". She is currently working on several projects which she prays will get to see the light of day. She can be contacted at

Raquel Gutierrez is an L.A.-based Salvi punk ass mestiza who straddles live active cultures. She lives to write, perform and spin alternative beats.

Ana M. Lara is a mulatina pata poeta. She currently migrates on a yearly basis and will be landing in L.A. next Fall, downwind from San Pancho. Spanglish is her native tongue.

Eileen Ma is a Chinese-American daughter of a chef and a story-telling nurse, a cat-lover and is currently in transition between worlds, and California and New York. She has worked as an organizer both in unions and non-profit organizations for many years.

Xochitl Marquez is a UCLA graduate and community activist. She is a delicious super high femme.

Brianna Mestas is a Queer Xicana from a distant and enchanting land called Mead, Colorado. Now attending CU Boulder, she is attempting to make a Queer space and presence for herself and all the closeted Mechistas- I know about you.

Claudia Rodríguez is a 26 year old writer/activist/jota straight outta’ Compton. She is a recent California Institute of the Arts MFA in creative writing graduate and recipient of an Emerging Lesbian Writer award from the Astraea Foundation.

Anna Lilia Salinas was born and raised in Alice, South Texas. She received a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in 1986, and an M.S. in bilingual education in 1992. She lives is Austin, exhibits extensively, has worked as a school teacher, and is currently a restauranteur.

Lizette Sanchez is a Cali-Rican living happily by the Pacific Ocean.

Susy J. Zepeda is a Queer Chicana Revolucionaria. She will be starting her third year of teaching with LAUSD. She plans to attend grad school and continue her research on marginalized communidades.





Tongues Magazine Issue One 2001

From the editors... by Stacy Macias for Tongues

Welcome/Bienvenidos to the premiere issue of the print version of Tongues. We are extremely thrilled and proud to present to you a labor of love that we hope will revolutionize Queer Women of Color print media by creating a space/magazine that is the first of its kind.

In the design of a magazine intended to address and appeal to Queer Women of Color communities, we asked ourselves two key questions: what constitutes "Queer Women of Color" as an identity marker and what are Queer Women of Color issues? The effort to produce a magazine that is truly representative of Queer Women of Color is a perplexing task, and while dialoguing around these two questions, we emerged with more questions rather than "real" answers.

Although we are Latina/Chicana Queer Women of Color focused due to the circumstantial representation of this constituency in our effort, our original vision involved the inclusion of Queer Women of Color across different populations--age, ethnic, gender, generation, nationality, etc. So, we use these pages not only to share beautiful and powerful talent, but also as a call to action that urges Queer Women of Color to see the beauty and power in collaboration.

We increasingly need to make collaborations a priority as our work to end racial, ethnic, economic and gender discrimination and its manifestations becomes more strategic and critical. By including a fusion of material ranging from drag kings of color and the complexities of identity politics to international policies and the perpetual struggle for justice, why not think any and every issue--political, social, economic, cultural, international, etc--is a Queer Women of Color issue??? This is what we would most like our readers to interrogate as well. It is the stance we take as we send this first issue to print and will continue to take in the many(!) issues that follow. This idea has been on the tips of our tongues for two years, and we hope to inspire you all to get whatever is on the tip of your tongue out there--and in here, too!

Tongues Magazine Issue One 2001 Contributors:

sharon bridgforth is the author of the bull-jean stories; performance stories published by RedBone Press. the bull-jean stories received the 1998 Lambda Literary Award for best book by a small press.

Rocio Carlos-Gonzales, born and raised in South/East Los Angeles, is a self described pissed off child of immigrants. She writes about being a woman, Xicana, Queer, in love and not out to her family. Oh yes, and the pinche border too.

Aurora Garcia is cute and has found a new passion for Novelas which portray well-developed and well-rounded characters and include back-to-back, action-packed drama. She loves her career as a first grade teacher at her old elementary school, where she serves as a positive Same-Gender-Loving role model.

Alicia Gaspar de Alba, an Associate Professor at the Cesar E. Chavez Center for Interdisciplinary Instruction in Chicana/o Studies at UCLA, is the author of The Mystery of Survival and Other Stories, Sor Juana’s Second Dream, and Chicano Art Inside/Outside the Master’s House: Cultural Politics and the CARA Exhibition.

Raquel Gutierrez is the Renaissance Queer womyn of color. She writes, performs and spins alternative beats from Rancheras to Hip Hop.

JoAnna Ley is a 24 year old two-spirited Chicana, committed por vida to struggle for the self-determination of her people, through the enigmatic power of palabra y arte. As she obtains her MFA in Creative Writing at Cal Arts, she hopes to win the Lotto, or get some grants, to one day establish a Chicana Empowerment Center for la communidad.

Alma Lopez is a visual and public artist.

Felicia Luna Lemus lives in Eagle Rock, Los Angeles. Her writing Appeared recently in the fall issue of ZYZZYVA. She is currently working on her first novel.

Vero Max Madrigal is 26 from small-town, California; where he devirginized several country girls. He is the manager/agent/promoter of Backstreet Noize and with his winning smile, boy or girl, you just can't refuse his irresistible charm. Watch out for this Latin heart throb!

Xochitl Marquez is a UCLA graduate and community activist. She is a delicious super high femme.

Chinwe Odeluga is an African American filmmaker, poet, Licensed Chemical Dependency Counselor, lesbian and women's health activist.

Monica Palacios is a highly anthologized writer, performer and adjunct professor. She tours the country with her one mujer shows: Besame Mucho, Greetings From A Queer Senorita and Latin Lezbo Comic.

Glynnis Reed is a visual artist and first year MFA at UCI.

Claudia Rodríguez is a 25 year old writer/activist/jota straight outta’ Compton. She is currently a second year student at the California Institute of the Arts. She’s a recent recipient of an Emerging Lesbian Writer award from the Astraea Foundation.

Nadine Romero is a young butch Chicana artist raised in Echo Park. She received her BA from California State University, Northridge.

Lizette Sanchez is a Cal-Rican (Puerto Rican born in California) who loves good food and a good woman.

Cristina Serna teaches History and Social Studies in South Gate.

Mirna Tapia was born and raised in Mexico City. She creates imagery and writes poetry that is culturally specific yet personal to her experiences