- I grew up in a house made of wood and glass. “Nothing to see outside. The house should look inward,” said the architect, and in the center he built a garden.
- In that house there lived a Physicist, a Mathematician, a Biologist, and a Chemist. These are the roles I give them when I want to talk about my past as if it were a story. Then it’s easier to explain that what actually happened is the same thing that happens in all families. The Chemist left, gave up chemistry. But there’s a catch: can what’s absorbed through osmosis ever be fully left behind? My only answer is the definition I memorized in university: chemistry is the study of changes in matter.
- The roof of the house is also made of glass. In the morning, the sun comes through its twenty-six panels, nourishes the two ficus trees in the indoor garden—and, at the end of August, hits me in the face as I sit there wasting time. I tell my parents while I’m in Mexico I’m going to start a book, but instead of writing, I’m sprawled in an armchair looking up at the roof. I look through it at the sky. I spend so much time looking at it that the object of my study stops being what I see through, and becomes what I see. The glass.
- A definition from 1933: glasses are undercooled solidified melts.
- I’d be lying if I said that my mother, the Mathematician, and my father, the Physicist, tried to stop me from quitting chemistry. They knew that after four years of the study of matter, and twenty-five years of scientific cohabitation, I’d already absorbed scientific thought and language. I was the only one who didn’t know this when I left Mexico for the United States to write. But there’s no escape if what you find when you look inside yourself is always science. Little by little, words like bond, synthesis, reaction, decay filtered into my poems. Hybrid words trapped between two worlds.
- There are other ways to define chemistry. Linus Pauling wrote the first General Chemistry in 1940, and he defined it as the science of substances—their structure, their properties, and their reactions that change them into other substances over time.
- Why build a roof out of glass? A skylight, maybe—but a whole roof? Glass is fragile, breakable, amorphous, cold, translucent, without order, without equilibrium, untrustworthy, and—as I discovered with my first boyfriend—it doesn’t allow for privacy.
- Two months in Mexico before I go to Spain. The days dissolve one into the next, one long day, longer than long, with no school and no work—days that remind me of summer as a little girl or weekends as a teenager. I sleep in my childhood bed, surrounded by the dolls I collected and the books that returned home with me. My suitcase is in a perpetually half-packed state, and disorder radiates from it. Piles of books that will stay, notes that will come with me, sweaters, shoes, notebooks, tax forms. My surroundings reflect my circumstances: I’m in between two phases.
- One day, a few years ago, the roof leaked. All fall, the gutters had filled with leaves, and during that first storm the rainwater trickled in between the glass roof and the stone wall, turning the wall into a waterfall, the floor into a puddle, the interior into an exterior.
- “A glass is an example, probably the simplest example, of the truly complex.”
- What is glass? Even the most basic sources disagree. The Royal Spanish Academy (RAE): glass is a hard, fragile, and transparent or translucent solid without a crystalline structure. A delicate and breakable thing or a person of delicate temperament, easily irritated or angered. Colloquial Spanish expression meaning “to take the blame”: to pay for broken glass. Another, Google: glass is a supercooled liquid, a viscous material that flows very slowly, so slowly that it would take hundreds of years to flow at room temperature. One more, Wikipedia: common glass, composition: silica, lime, and soda melted together at 1800˚C and cooled until they form a disordered structure. A material that doesn’t behaves like either a solid or a liquid.
- In his introduction to General Chemistry, Pauling writes: “The words that are used in describing nature, which is itself complex, may not be capable of precise definition. In giving a definition for such a word the effort is made to describe the accepted usage.” But when I said to the Mathematician coming, ten more minutes, I wasn’t thinking about how ten minutes is 600 seconds and one second is the duration of 9×10⁹ periods of the radiation corresponding to the transition between two hyperfine levels of the ground state of the cesium 133 atom. In everyday life, a minute is relative—but in science, words aspire to mathematical precision, to a perfection that evades them in their fluidity.
- In Mexico City, the city of forgotten rivers, everything that flows is piped, stagnates, buried underground. Everything except the rain. The fat, cold, noisy drops revive the seven lakes and forty-five rivers. There used to be a rainy season, but now there’s nothing to hold the rain back, so it pounds against the roof all year long. One afternoon at the end of August, the area around my neighborhood floods, the water reaches car roofs, the Biologist is stuck and can’t get home. From my bed I listen to the storm, remembering my childhood fantasies. I used to imagine that one day the raindrops and the hail would pierce the roof. The crashing rain and shattered glass would pour in onto the garden. A river would form and flood my room, set my bed adrift. It never occurred to me to swim, so I would steer along the newly created rivers until I ended up far, far away from home, with no way to get back. The return of the water to Mexico City. As I write this, I realize it’s not the first time I’ve described this fantasy.
- The difference between a solid and a liquid is the difference between the two ways of fitting a set of billiard balls into a box: carefully, one by one, one on top of the other, in neat lines, creating order, a compact packing, a solid; or, letting them fall with only chaos as their guide. When it comes to a box of billiard balls, my sense of order has always been liquid.
- When I was a teenager, the Mathematician used to ask me to pick up my room every three days. The perfect answer: but Mom, I can’t—all spontaneous processes tend toward entropy, toward chaos. I made her smile, but it never worked. She always answered that I just had to use more energy. In my house, applying the Second Law of Thermodynamics to my chores wasn’t enough to get out of doing them. Now that I’m back, my mother’s request returns too, but after more days have gone by, as if distance has changed her standards.
- The American Society for Testing and Materials defined the simplest method for differentiating a solid from a liquid in 1996. Place the sample in a closed container at 38˚ Take off the lid and turn it over. Observe the material. If it flows a total of 50mm or less in three minutes, it’s considered a solid; if not, it’s a liquid. All my attempts to test this methodology end in disaster. A puddle of water, a handful of rocks, a dribble of honey. They all end up on the floor.
- An experiment: stand in front of a window. Touch its surface with a finger. Feel the resistance. Now a second finger. Rest your entire hand against it. Push. Feel its solidity. Understand that a macroscopic view is useless in this case. Imagine instead that it gives way beneath your fingers, liquifies. Would it be cold, wet, viscous? I forget about the experiment and rest my face against the window.
- Main characteristics of a solid: resists changes of form or volume, has a defined shape, its particles are closely packed and ordered. Main characteristics of a liquid: has a defined volume regardless of pressure, but takes the form of its container. A cubic milliliter of water is the same in a cup, a bowl, a vase, the palm of my hand, a bathtub. And all those milliliters share the most important characteristic of a liquid: they’re fluid—that is, they can flow.
- And glass? Does it flow?
- The language of science today is English, but writing in it would make things more complicated for me given this particular subject. In English, “glass” is a broad category, in which everything made of this material is a glass. Maybe this expresses its great instability more accurately than Spanish’s many words. Not only is the threat of breaking glass ever-present, but a glass can be the thing for holding water or wine—then there are eyeglasses for seeing, hourglasses for measuring time, sunglasses, the spyglass that enlarges small things and observes the faraway, the glass used for measuring the weather, and even the glass formed by lightning at the beach. Glass is one, glass is all of them. In English, even growing up under a ceiling made of glass would be full of connotations.
- “The deepest and most interesting unsolved problem in solid state theory is probably the theory of the nature of glass and the glass transition.”
- To flow: atoms can be displaced easily, they’re not tied to each other, they’re not static. Fluids flow (it’s one of their characteristics, not redundancy—scientific language isn’t afraid of repetition) because under any force, they transform, give no resistance. The Mathematician used to tell me: you’re like a fluid, you adjust to your containers, you transform, you choose to go around the obstacles in your way. How easily the scientific becomes metaphorical.
- Among the types of fluids are the Newtonians and the non-Newtonians. Before I knew who Newton was, I understood these categories. At dinner, the Physicist used to take a jar of sour cream and shake it as he explained for the nth time (science sneaks in at the slightest provocation) that sour cream is a non-Newtonian fluid. “If you exercise a force on it, it becomes more liquid, it’s easier to serve.” In my childhood, even the most everyday thing became the source for scientific explanations.
- I spend hours watching videos of glassblowing. Years ago, in a lab in Wisconsin, a PhD student showed me how to heat glass test tubes, deforming them to connect beakers to a vacuum pump, creating a many-legged lab insect. This asymmetrical creature held a translucent liquid preserved inside it that slowly changed color, a magnetic stir bar spinning it for hours, a chemical reaction in process. Centrifuge for a day, let rest for a few hours, then break the insect open and extract the new compound.
- A supercooled liquid is a step between a solid and a liquid. Near the melting point, the molecules are moving, but run the risk of sudden crystallization. A glass is cooled beyond cold—beyond its freezing point—that is, beyond what’s solid, until the molecules have lost all possibility of movement, stuck between order and disorder in a metastable state. Christian Bök said it best in his poem “Glass”: “Glass represents / a poetic element // exiled / to a borderline // between / states of matter: // breakable water // not yet frozen, // yet unpourable.”
- September finds me working at the dining room table—not just because it’s glass, but because I can spread out all the books and notes I need to write. During a family dinner, sitting at this very table, I can see my sister’s long legs, my father’s same old moccasins, my mother’s compression socks. We used to have a dog that would jump up thinking the food he saw was for him, crashing into the table. They ask what I’m working on and I tell them about glass’ aggregation dilemma. No one knows what it is. My sister says that in school she learned that cathedral windows are thicker at the bottom, due to gravity, because they’re liquids. Later, I investigate. The windows of European cathedrals are made of blown glass framed in lead. At room temperature, the viscosity of glass is 1020 poises and that of lead is 1011 If a European window began to flow, drops of metal would fall first, not glass.
- Pitch is a supercooled liquid, though other studies describe it as a breakable solid—in the end, it’s more or less the same thing. In 1930, a piece of pitch was placed in a glass funnel in Queensland. Since then, nine drops have fallen, the last one on April 17, 2014. It’s estimated that the viscosity of pitch is 2.3×1011 times that of water. It can drip. Unlike the glass funnel that holds it, it flows.
- It’s two in the morning. The page is called The Tenth Watch, the tenth watch for the tenth drop. As the video loads, a message appears: Hi! Only 14 or so years to go. A camera steadily observes the sample of pitch: its glass funnel, the black drop suspended. Everything under a glass bell jar. Each time I log on, I’m one of seventeen viewers. Who else in the world is watching? Will I be alone, the only human being alongside the computers supervising the drop? For a few moments, my imagination gets the best of me, and I think it moves, the drop widens, maybe it’s almost there, it’s going to fall, so close...But nothing happens.
- Where does the myth of the stained glass in gothic cathedrals come from? Someone observed that a few pieces of glass were thinner near the top, as if gravity were slowly making the material flow, thickening the base. It’s false proof, still taught in schools. The difference in thickness is a characteristic of blown glass, a flaw in the process. To disprove the concept, a theoretical experiment was proposed: suspend a plate of glass one meter high and one centimeter thick in a room at room temperature. The question: how much time would it take for the glass to flow so that the base widened by 10 angstroms? The answer: the age of the universe.
- The myth that glass is a liquid is produced by analogy—but it’s not a solid, either. So, what is it? Which matters more: how much time a glass takes to flow, or the image of the windows melting, the drops falling, all the glass in the world transformed into water? Is the mystery of the nature of glass strong enough to hold all my worries, all the words I’m putting together? Is the necessity of describing something unknown, something language can’t reach, enough? Glass is a destabilizer.
- Imagine you’re a melted material, boiled at more than 1800˚C till white-hot. Imagine you begin to cool slowly, so slowly that each of your atoms stops moving. You get heavy, you coalesce. On a phase diagram, you’re moving toward solid, toward crystallization. Or not. Maybe you have the nature of glass, and you can feel your molecules keep moving beyond the melting point, as you drop along the slope. Imagine the disorder inside you, growing along with your viscosity, growing as the temperature lowers to 20˚ You are almost a solid, but only barely.
- I was in my second year at university when I studied phase diagrams for the first time in Kinetics and Equilibrium class. The basic example is the diagram for water. Two axes, pressure and temperature; a line curving out from the origin to branch into two. To the left, the first line indicates a solid, the space between the two branches is liquid, and below that, vapor. The lines represent all the points of sublimation, melting, and evaporation, where water is, at the same time, liquid and solid, or liquid and gaseous. But there is just one point at which water is a solid, a liquid, and a gas at the same time. This point is found at 273.16K and 4.65mmHg.
- The type depends on its composition. Glass with boron in it is used in labs because it resists heat and doesn’t crystallize; it doesn’t break easily. The lenses of my glasses contain lead—greenish glass, or “forest glass,” produced in Cologne until the 15th century, had that color due to its iron content. But 90% of glass is just silicon, oxygen, calcium, and sodium. The composition affects the glass transition, the moment in the phase diagram at which the slope changes, and instead of crystalizing, disorder begins: a glass is formed. Systems at those points are very fragile, a change in temperature or pressure can alter the result. A liquid, instead of a solid. An experiment from university: cool milk slowly, little by little, using cold water, ice, and salt. At -5˚C, the milk is still liquid, but one tap of a fingertip and crystallization begins. In one second, it’s a solid, unrecognizable.
- Phase diagrams are graphical representations of the boundaries between the different states of matter of a system. As a liquid freezes toward becoming a typical solid, it experiences a phase change; the molecules line up, one on top of the other, in a simple pattern. They form a crystal. When a glass cools, the liquid becomes more and more viscous until it solidifies: the molecules move slower and slower until they stop. They’re trapped in a strange state between liquid and solid. Is it possible that one theory could explain all the kinds of glass? In the end, glasses are defined not by one common characteristic, but by the lack of one: order.
- Another experiment: I’m in my Kinetics and Equilibrium lab, looking at a creature made of a glass beaker and rubber hose. The transparent liquid resting in its belly is cyclohexane, a hexagonal molecule that looks like a honeycomb. The boiling flask, suspended by a clamp, is connected to a vacuum pump and a thermometer. As the pressure is lowered, the temperature goes down, too. We’re looking for a point at 45mmHg and 6˚ Lower, lower, lower—the cyclohexane bubbles, but it’s not boiling like water. The bubbles slow little by little, the liquid gets more viscous, the surface solidifies, and the gas turns into ice with each bubble that reaches the surface. The system comes to life. Inside the flask, a solid sinks, a liquid bubbles, and a layer of gas solidifies and forms droplets. At the triple point, cyclohexane turns opaque and is—at the same time—all three states of matter.
- After my Spanish visa appointment, all I can do is wait. To distract myself, I talk with old friends, tell them all the interesting facts I’ve learned about glass. I become mono-thematic, full of did-you-know I ask a friend: did you know that cotton candy is a glass? and he answers that glass breaks because the driving force crystallizes the edges. To test this, I buy a drinking glass because my mother would get mad if I started breaking the glassware: our current cohabitation, since my return, feels too fragile to experiment with. When I tell her what I plan to do, she says that for the sake of art it wouldn’t have bothered her that I’d broken a glass, and she encourages me to break it inside a plastic bag, or two, for safety’s sake. I pause multiple times before dropping it. It’s strange breaking something on purpose, with a purpose. The first time the impact sounds opaque, flat—the glass bounces, but doesn’t break. The second time, with more force—again a muffled sound. The third, the bag above my head, much more force, it has to work this time—there: the piercing sound, crystalline, of something breaking. When I pick up the bag, I notice it’s warm.
- In the book Líquidos exóticos [Exotic Liquids], the authors speak of the eventual crystallization of glass. “It’s estimated that some glasses, like the leaded glass in gothic cathedrals, will take thousands of years to crystallize. When this happens, the glass will be transformed into a crystalline solid and will break, like car windshields, for no apparent reason.” My nighttime terrors could become reality. The roof of my childhood could break in a second, for no reason, just because over thousands of years, each panel will crystallize, and the weight of order will shatter them.
- No state is more metastable than waiting.
- I open the bag outside, in the garden, and take out the fragments one by one—gingerly, so I don’t cut myself. My fingers are covered in a glassy dust. I observe the edges carefully. They aren’t translucent, you can’t see through them—it’s as though someone had polished them, you can see waves, cracks. What was I hoping for? How did I imagine a crystal would look? Crystals are solids, but these edges are the first thing that makes me think maybe glass is a liquid. Later, I look on the internet to see if what my friend told me is true. I learn that glass, in its disorder, has micro-cracks, and these invisible cracks make it fragile despite its durability. How glass breaks depends on chance, on the impact, on the force, all the micro-cracks of the cooling process. Not a single page talks about the crystallization of the edges, but does it matter? I observe a fragment of glass, now shapeless, useless, more liquid than when it was whole. Science needs precise, testable explanations, but do I need them? Does this writing exercise based on the reappropriation and transformation of my own language need them? Do I need to find some truth? Or are the edges of this debris enough for me: wavy, fluid, splitting the light to form a tiny rainbow in each crack.
- On September 18, my visa is denied. The next day, everything breaks.
- This is what breaks: molars, the voice, peace, childhood friendships, plant stems, language, the mind, ancient vessels, my dreams of working in research, ionic bonds, necks, hips, clavicles, bellybuttons, the whole body, emotions, sounds, my grandmother’s wine glasses, summer romances, independent clauses, health, good moods, hair, social fabrics, pinky toes.
- When the floor loses its solidity and ripples, I’m in bed reading. In one second, all action is reaction, is in the imperative: jump out of bed, cross the indoor garden, get out of the house, look for your sister, call her, keep breathing, wait. Dogs bark, birds chirp, and we humans keep silence. The glass roof creaks, shudders, vibrates with each undulation. It’s going to break. A half-formed thought. But when then earthquake passes, we only find that the quartz geode has tumbled off the shelf and shattered on the floor. The glass roof, on the other hand, didn’t break.
- How to write about the cracks, between the cracks, when even language is in ruins?
- Normal life shatters, too. I stop writing, lose the thread of my project and all thoughts of glass, language, or my place in my childhood home. I watch TV with my father, the rest of the rooms in darkness and silence. An infuriating succession: buildings collapsing in clouds of dust and uproar—cries and banging from beneath the debris—pairs of dogs—young people in human chains passing empty buckets that return full of stones—pets abandoned and found—tables, backpacks, homework, dolls, frying pans, the signs of many lives―dishes full of food—empty metro cars running for free—people helping and waiting, people searching for a place to help or wait—messages asking for flashlights, helmets, medicine, water, and comfort―the fragmented images are superimposed during our vigil, as if the power of the gaze—televised, collective—could restore order.
- Not everything that breaks crystallizes.
- In October, I get my visa. After I buy my plane ticket, the days speed up. I start packing. I put photos, letters, and postcards into a metal box. Images and words of my family and friends that will travel with me. I pause on a postcard from last summer. It has on one side, “I hope you’ll visit Madrid,” and on the other, a picture of el Palacio de Cristal. An epiphany: that’s where this book is headed, toward Madrid and el Palacio de Cristal. That’s the ending: the writer changes countries and finds her written efforts made monument. Both architectural and narrative growth—from a glass roof to a whole palace. I start to feel relieved: I can think of my departure as a destination.
- My approaching journey makes me take up writing again. I read Glass (Object Lessons) by John Garrison. I appreciate his attempt to track glass through the art of the past and the imaginations of the future, but I only write down one quote: “Even when it’s transparent and trying its best to be invisible, it’s still affecting how we experience what is beyond it.” He’s talking about glass, but this idea could apply to all of language—or scientific language, to be precise. How to write about science from the outside? Stop seeing through language, using it as a tool, pretending exactitude is possible in words? What happens to scientific words when they’re observed? And if we stretch the metaphor, it could be said that words become unstable and change aggregation states.
- When I get to Madrid, I plan my visit to el Palacio de Cristal carefully. I go alone, walking through el Retiro on a day when I already feel far away, when novelty begins to give way to routine. The first time, I don’t go in. I sit down to take notes on the other side of the pond. There’s a long line around el Palacio to see the exposition inside. Doris Salcedo, the Colombian sculptor, called her intervention in the space Palimpsesto—a memorial made of water, formed by invisible, fluid words. In this case it is a funeral oration, a poetics of pain and a way of mourning the people who have lost their lives trying to cross the Mediterranean. Salcedo says in an interview: “The future is built on the ruins of the past, and art helps clarify this call to attention.” That afternoon, when I get back for dinner, I find out that Doris Salcedo was in la Residencia de Estudiantes talking with my fellow residents when I was still in Mexico.
- Over the course of the next few weeks, I return again and again to el Palacio de Cristal in search of the ending.
- Doris Salcedo defines herself as a “maker of objects.” She was the first woman invited to take part in the Unilever series, in which an artist was invited to intervene in the Turbine Room of the Tate Modern in London. For her intervention, Salcedo cracked the floor of the room. Of the work, the director of the Tate said: “There is a crack, there is a line, and eventually there will be a scar. It will remain as a memory of the work and also as a memorial to the issues Doris touches on.” Salcedo wanted to represent borders—migrants’ experiences of crossing them, as well as their destinies upon reaching the other side. For Salcedo, the crack is negative space; because of everything that fits inside it and is “too many things,” as Borges says in Other Inquisitions of the crack that appears in the Roman Forum in Hawthorne’s The Marble Faun. “It is the crack of which the Latin historians speak and also the mouth of the hell with shadowy monsters and atrocious faces and it is also the fundamental horror of human life and it is also Time, which devours statues and armies, and it is also Eternity, which locks away the ages.”
- I leave el Palacio de Cristal without answers. I feel as though my curiosity must have stayed behind in Mexico, even though here, far away, I identify more than ever with glass and its metastability. Maybe I should have explained it before. It’s the property, due to slow transformations, exhibited by a system with various states of equilibrium, when it stays in a barely stable state for a considerable amount of time. Writing this definition, I wonder: where is the equilibrium when you’re no longer part of your childhood bed, or your girlhood—or part of the rooms in the countries you choose as resting points?
- Metastability is always temporary—with the force of external disturbances, these systems evolve toward a more stable state.
- In 2016, at the University of Sheffield, during the conference of the Society of Glass Technology, Edgar Dutra Zanotto gave a keynote speech entitled “Glass: Myths and Marvels,” during which he proposed a new definition: “Glass is a non-equilibrium, non-crystalline state of matter that appears solid on a short time scale but relaxes toward the liquid state. Their ultimate fate, in the limit of infinite time, is to crystallize.” It’s the most recent definition published to date. Scientists circle around the idea of glass, refining the definition word by word, as if they were progressing millimeter by millimeter. That’s what science does. It presupposes that there is an absolute truth we approach with each repeatable experiment and proven hypothesis. The main idea is the truth of being able to explain what’s around us and understand it completely. When I studied chemistry, I developed the bad habit of searching for certainty and precision in words—but that’s the same error as believing that the fog I can see in winter when I breathe out is an ideal gas. I thought they were solid, trustworthy, but the exercise of writing taught me that they mold to whatever container you put them in. They flow.
- Glass, because of its metastability, doesn’t belong to any one state of matter. It’s a material without a family. Its orphanhood comes from the limitations of language, the rigidity of taxonomy. Definitions in scientific language can’t be fluid. Faced with the mystery of glass, we have to accept the fragility of language, its lack of precision. But doing so opens the door to a way of talking about the most elusive experiences, sensations, and feelings—which can only be understood through metaphor, though many times we fail in our attempt to capture them in language. In failing to define glass, in having to make comparisons and create new categories, I discover that the orphanhood of glass is, in its turn, the primary failure and the orphanhood of writing.
- On the day I arrived in Madrid, everyone told me it was the first cold day since the end of summer. In the morning, as I cross el Retiro, the chilly air feels crystalline, and under my feet I hear the crunch of leaves I no longer need a map to find el Palacio de Cristal. I enter it and amble through, more occupied with searching for my own reflection in the windows than looking at the names on the floor. Unlike my house, el Palacio was built to look out: the pond, the blue sky, all the trees in the park. In Mexico, I always looked toward the outside—but now, in Madrid, I’m looking inside. You’re always so contrary. As I look at the glass, I think how one day everything around me will crystallize, will shatter, and in doing so will find equilibrium. Will I, too? It’s hard to determine the final state of the system from this perspective. Between two states there’s a transition, which sometimes reaches equilibrium, and sometimes metastability—it all depends on the circumstances. Only with the passage of time, by looking back, can you tell which of the two it was.
- Some days it comforts me to remember that Lavoisier’s law applies to all of nature.
On Glass: Selected References
Is Glass Liquid or Solid?, math.ucr.edu/home/baez/physics/General/Glass/glass.html
“The Ninth Watch for the Ninth Pitch Drop.” The Tenth Watch for the Tenth Pitch Drop,
Chang, Kenneth. “The Nature of Glass Remains Anything but Clear.” The New York Times, 29
July 2008, https://nyti.ms/2lLsvnf
Curtin, Ciara. “Fact or Fiction?: Glass Is a (Supercooled) Liquid.” Scientific American, 22 Feb.
Garrison, John S. Glass. Bloomsbury Academic, 2015.
Neumann, Florin. “Glass: Liquid or Solid — Science vs. an Urban Legend.”, 1996,
Pauling, Linus. General Chemistry, an Introduction to Descriptive Chemistry and Modern
Chemical Theory. Charles E. Tuttle Co., 1966.
Scholze, Horst, and Michael J. Lakin. Glass: Nature, Structure and Properties. Springer-Vlg,
Andrea Chapela (Mexico City, 1990) has a degree in chemistry from the UNAM and an MFA in Spanish Creative Writing from the University of Iowa. Her saga Vâudïz was published by Urano. In 2016, she was awarded a Jóvenes Creadores grant for a science-fiction short story collection.
Kelsi Vanada translates from Spanish and writes poems. She has collaborated on translations of Swedish poet Marie Silkeberg, and her translation of The Eligible Age by Berta García Faet was published by Song Bridge Press in 2018. Kelsi is the Program Manager of ALTA.