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I am a daughter of language and of the literary origin of my name, Lilvia, the typographical error my mother found in a novel she read while awaiting my birth. The fortuitous encounter of a printing error with the imagination of a woman expecting her first child gave me the name that has taught me passion for literature and respect for linguistic imagination.

I live from language. I teach both English and Spanish. I have taught both languages in local, national, and international contexts at all levels, from pre-kindergarten to Ph.D. students at Harvard. I have been a professor, a higher education administrator, a translator, and a consultant. I grew up in Mexico City, and I have lived in Chihuahua, Mexico; Cambridge, England; Seville, Spain; and many areas of the United States. 

I am alive because of language. My days and my nights are made of words. For years, I wrote literary criticism and poetry in Spanish. I have now reclaimed my second motherland, the English I learned in my adolescence, the language that connects me with my Irish great-great-grandfather, Miguel Mc Nerny, and with my Scottish great-great-grandfather, John Johnson Lockhead Thayne. Today I write poetry, short fiction, and essays in both English and Spanish. My two languages, as do my two heritages, nurture each other.

Photo: Antonio Muñoz

Photo: Raechel Running

Photo: William Holst

Photo: William Holst

Photo: unkown tourist

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