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November 21st, 2017 by jomo

Since my previous post on the subject, I listened to a book set in south central New Mexico in the 19th century . The reader pronounced the Spanish word “bosque” (woods, forest) as if it rhymed with English “mosque” (a reasonable mistake). In Spanish it is pronounced “BOHS-kay” but Anglos pronounce it “BOSS-key.” It refers to the riparian wooded bottoms of rivers in the Southwestern US. My grandpa, who farmed a few irrigated acres near Socorro, NM, called the nearby Rio Grande river bottom woodlands “the bosky.” I roamed the bosky as a kid, with my dog and a single-shot .22 , ‘exploring.’

In central Texas, around Waco, there is a Bosque River and a Bosque County – both pronounced “Bosky.”

The reader of the book is one of my favorites, George Guidall. My oldest certain recollection of him is as the narrator about twenty-five years ago of a couple of Robertson Davies novels when Books-on-Tape really were on tape cassettes. The Cunning Man and Murther & Walking Spirits were the novels, I believe. Well-done narrations of well-written stories.

I emailed Mr Guidall about the pronunciation of bosque and he thanked me pleasantly in return.

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