Promising Spanish Poetry

Abbas Panakkal

    ‘Modern poetry began not in English at all, but in Spanish’ is really a quote stuck my mind when I was a post graduate student of English Language and Literature. Now I, adding up contemporary genre of Spanish poetry, am really happy to reaffirm it once again in my mind after my dear poet Diego Valverde Villena, the official ambassador of contemporary Spanish poetry, mailed me the translated versions of celebrated present-day Spanish poetry from Spain.

    Yes, it is coincidental that the guest editing of Spanish poetry happens just a few days after the sad demise of Hugo Chavez and new pragmatism simultaneously supplements to my believe in well knit alliances of the universal realities, which can also be called poetic hallucination.

    Garcia Marquez was inspired to write a novel when he witnessed the flight of Venezuelan dictator Marcos Perez Jimenez. He shared, "it was the first time we had seen a dictator fall in Latin America." But here it is the lament over a powerful chief and courageous leader.

    Marquez once called Neruda "the greatest poet of the 20th century not in Spanish but in any language". Pablo Neruda, poet, diplomat and politician Nobel laureate was attracting me too to the fascinating tradition of Spanish language poetry and his variety of strong metaphors made me read much. I keep side by side passion to poems as well the one hundred years of solitude.

    Spanish language was widely used in Latin American countries and the literature also got extensive attention all over the world. Writers from more than twenty countries use Spanish as their first language for their literary expressions, composing unique literature with innate nature of their mother tongue. The real literature was far beyond the boundaries of countries and cultures.

    It is not the literature or culture of a country, but officially Spanish literature supports many countries like Argentina, Bolivia, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Cuba, Ecuador, El Salvador, Honduras, Mexico, Nicaragua, Paraguay, Peru, Spain, Uruguay and Venezuela etc who keep the tradition of Spanish lingua franca

    Spanish poetry is not stipulated to traditions of countries, but a human nature and culture which brought healthier contemplation to literary world. In the 19th century, the great era of Spanish poetry, there were many different styles to Spanish poetry, one style was called Fortuname and another Amoramente. Everything culminated in to contemporary age poetry, which became experimental, using themes, styles and characteristics combining with current literary movements.

    My dear poet Diego Valverde Villena significantly helped me to realize this special issue and his translations provided the best experience of contemporary Spanish poetry. Though there were hundreds of reasons for my attraction to Spanish literature, the magical touches of emotions were the main force for keeping me abreast to contemporary Spanish creative writings, especially poetry.

    The four poets featured here are from different cities of Spain José María Álvarez (Cartagena, 1942) Amalia Bautista (Madrid, 1962) Vicente Valero (Ibiza, 1963)Diego Valverde Villena (Lima, 1967)Jaime García Márquez (Murcia, 1973).

    Amalia Bautista, in the poem ‘Love Prison’ ,speaks the real brain wave of passion and gender equality of love and lust. This is certainly poetry of the time and I am sure that genders are set apart or distinguish, when some writers think seriously about the inhibitions. Here the female gender is more equal to men, when words think to get pleasure from prison officer, where the counterpart is not conscious about the emotional whereabouts of the female.

    “So, my dear one, don’t be surprised
    and don’t abuse me, if unexpected,
    you come and find me with the jailer.”

    The poem ‘Dream about my father’ is really providing feel of the post modern probe of a poet. It, well dissolve me into the darkness, is the emotion of identity which thinks seriously about the existence and really worried on slighter effects of weeping eyes.

    “Here I am. Don’t cry, because your weeping
    could very well dissolve me into the darkness
    again, and now forever”

    I could feel sparkle of experimental poetry in Jose Maria Alvarez.

    “Car End of summer, the
    chills, at dusk; some men
    grappling with boards doors and windows
    in the ramshackle beach-house. And the car, black, huge,
    magnificent, like a funeral
    hearse silence of photography: We all
    go up. I see the beach distancing
    from the window the wind moves the palm trees”

    Vicente Valero’s poems are full of metaphors, which reveal strength of contemporary poetry. Here the poetry is a supernatural power with the metamorphosis of thoughts and the metaphors of well-built natural beings.

    “The deer is a transparency and a reflection in the water, a shadow escaped from the promised garden of the psalmist, a strange event. A deer is always thirsty, that is why he knows the paths of the despairing, the parched tracks of other rivers. That is why I, in my thirst, have also seen him.”

    Diego Valverde Villena (Lima, 1967) is a hale and hearty mind of the contemporary Spanish poetry. His diction nourishes Spanish poetry much in globally acclaimed line and represents contemporary genre of international poetry in copious level.

    “To preserve
    my heart, wounded by love,
    you prefer salt.”( INHERITANCE)

    I really attached with his poem the Map, which is an atlas of contemporary mindset in the perspective of individual as well as groups, where we search our own characteristics.

    “That map you gave me
    of your heart
    is like one of those tourist maps:
    all the beautiful sights
    are close by
    and the streets are short
    and the routes are wide...

    And now it’s very late, because I’ve gone deep
    into the city, and there’s no way

    Your eyes gaze so far away
    they’re no longer of any use to me.
    I am irretrievably

    ‘I am irretrievably lost’ is an imagery of driven current world, where we lose ourselves in anomalous nature of fellow beings as well as natural changes.

    In desert rose, the poet Jaime Garcia Marquez (Murcia, 1973) converse closer to mother. It is really verbalization of emotions through very natural figure of speech, in other sense it reiterates with situations.

    “You are the beautiful riot of petals
    that no stem will ever presume to hold,
    mystical fruit in which the indifference
    of flower meets the humility of stone,
    and the living sand weds the flowering dust.”

    Contemporary Spanish poetry has developed promisingly in Spain. These poets are the best representations to keep the illustrious tradition of great poets, who paved unique way of Spanish literary tradition. Here the new generation poets hoist trendsetting imageries and metaphors by new style of verbatim method , which is competent enough to pace with any contemporary genre of poetry sprouting around the globe.

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