Beyond the Fog: Latin America’s “Invisible Poets”

Alváro Mutis. Photo Courtesy: El País

In spite of the efforts of literary prizes and Spanish publishers to promote Latin American poets, there are many that are relatively unknown outside of their native country.  Dario Jaramilllo, in this article for El Pais, expresses appreciation for the recognition given to poets such as Nicanor Parra (Chile), Alváro Mutis (Columbia) and Rafael Cadenas (Venezuela).  He dedicates the rest of his piece, however, to those poets who have not yet achieved this acceptance.

Jaramillo likens the neglected status of most Latin America poets within the Spanish-speaking world to a “fog.”  He writes that “names familiar in one country are ignored in neighboring countries, secret poets, cult poets, individuals of all ages that, despite their value, are hardly mentioned.”
He proceeds to list poets born in the 1920’s through the 70’s, creators of works that vary extensively in style and content.  He concludes by acknowledging his own inability to adequately identify all of them: “It is impossible to include all those that are suggested as great poets, and for this reason, this paragraph highlights only some and commits involuntary injustices.”

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