The Collected Poems: A Bilingual Edition (Revised)

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9780374526917: The Collected Poems: A Bilingual Edition (Revised)

A revised edition of this major writer's complete poetical work

And I who was walking
with the earth at my waist,
saw two snowy eagles
and a naked girl.
The one was the other
and the girl was neither.
-from "Qasida of the Dark Doves"

Federico García Lorca is the greatest poet of twentieth-century Spain and one of the world's most influential modernist writers. Christopher Maurer, a leading García Lorca scholar and editor, has substantially revised FSG's earlier edition of the collected poems of this charismatic and complicated figure, who-as Maurer says in his illuminating introduction-"spoke unforgettably of all that most interests us: the otherness of nature, the demons of personal identity and artistic creation, sex, childhood, and death."

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Review:

Long regarded as one of the premier Spanish modernists, Federico García Lorca's newly revised Collected Poems is a welcome contribution to this outstanding poet's prolific body of work. This bilingual edition includes many recently discovered poems and revised translations, updating the completeness of the verse produced by Lorca during his short life (he died at 38). Lorca's poetry is quirky, playful, not only filled with orange groves and olive trees, but a strange, physical world where a river has "garnet whiskers" or there exists a "recumbent sky" or "mummified ocean." Lorca wrote love poems, though we can never be sure what exactly is desired. His poetry isn't abstract, but the images are sometimes a bit out of reach--if anything, he tried to give the abstract a physical presence. For example, a lovers' exchange is given dimension in "The Poet Tells the Truth": "Let the skein never end / of I love you you love me, ever burnt / with decrepit sun and old moon." What Lorca wrote of a friend gored by a bull in "Lament for Ignacio Sánchez Mejías" seems applicable to his poetry generally: "I sing of his elegance in words that moan / and I remember a sad breeze in the olive grove." Collected Poems is an important addition to any poetry collection, especially for those unfamiliar with Lorca or those who wish to read the poems in their original Spanish. --Michael Ferch

About the Author:

Federico García Lorca was born in 1898 in Fuente Vaqueros, a few miles outside Granada in the province of Andalusia, southern Spain. From an early age he was fascinated by Spain's mixed heritage, adapting its ancient folk songs, ballads, lullabies, and flamenco music into poems and plays. By the age of thirty, he had published five books of poems, culminating in 1928 with Gypsy Ballads, which brought him far-reaching fame. In 1929-30 he studied in New York City, where he wrote the poems―among his most socially engaging and compelling―that were to be published posthumously (and famously) as Poet in New York. Upon returning to Spain he devoted much of his attention to theater, "the poetry which rises from the page . . . and becomes human." In 1936, at the outset of the Spanish Civil War, he was shot to death by anti-Republican rebels in Franco's army, and his books were banned and destroyed.

Christopher Maurer, the editor of García Lorca's Selected Verse, Poet in New York, and other works, is the author of numerous books and articles on Spanish poetry. He is head of the Department of Spanish, French, Italian, and Portuguese at the University of Illinois in Chicago.

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