Francisco Alarcón saw life as a poem — a single, continuous verse.
“He said he would never use a period until he died,” said his sister Esthela Alarcón. Each day added a line or stanza; only death would end it, her brother said.
The L.A.-born Chicano poet and factory laborer who worked his way from adult school, East L.A. College and Cal State Long Beach to Stanford University died Friday of stomach cancer in his Davis home, still eschewing that final punctuation. He was 61.
His death ended a prolific career as a bilingual poet, children's author and professor at UC Davis. Alarcón, once a finalist for California poet laureate, was...