Looking Within: Selected Poems, 1954-2000

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Wayne State University Press, 2003 - Poetry - 367 pages
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The African Cuban poet Nancy Morejón set out at a young age to explore the beauty and complexities of the life around and within her. Themes of social and political concern, loyalty, friendship and family, African identity, women’s experiences, and hope for Cuba’s future all found their way into her poems through bold metaphor and tender lyricism. This panoramic anthology, selected from ten volumes of Morejón’s work and organized by theme, contains some poems that have already been acclaimed in several languages, others that are less known, and some never before published. Overall they present to Morejón’s readership an enhanced, broader, and updated spectrum of her poetry in a Spanish-English edition.

Although Morejón does not sympathize as much with intellectualized feminism as with "street" feminism (the kind that erupts with force as it confronts daily life), her poems illuminate issues in women’s existence. Without intending to, she has revitalized contemporary Caribbean feminist literary discourse. One can find in her work the tensions between colonizer and colonized, dominator and dominated, and at the same time enjoy the sheer beauty of images depicting suffering, strength, and hope.

 

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Contents

Preface
13
Preludio Prelude
67
Mis lobos y tus pájaros 80 My Wolves and Your Birds
81
Las horas comunes 94 The Common Hours
95
Cotorra que atraviesa Manrique 106
106
Dibujo 118Drawing
119
Mythologies
133
Cuerda veloz 146 Swift String
147
Presente Ángela Domínguez 218
218
Tata ante la muerte de don Pablo 236
236
El café 248 Coffee
249
Hoja de hierba 258 Leaf of Grass
259
Pueblerina de Taxco 274 Village Girl from Taxco
275
Mundos 290Worlds
291
Agonizando triste 304 Agonizing Sad
305
Solaris 318Solaris
319

Mirar adentro Looking Within
161
Hablando con una culebra 174 Talking with a Serpent
175
Instante 190Instant
191
Persona
205
II
332
Para escapar herido 344 To Escape with a Wound
345
Poemarios publicados 364
364
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About the author (2003)

Winner of two prestigious Cuban awards, the Premio Nacional de Literatura Cubana and Premio de la Critica, Nancy Morejón is a poet, essayist, critic, editor, journalist, and translator. She was born in the Los Sitios district of Central Havana in 1944. Her first book, Mutismos, was published in 1962, and she has collaborated throughout her career with leading musicians, playwrights, and actors. She now directs the Caribbean Studies Center at Casa de las Américas, Havana, epicenter of Cuban and Latin American intelligentsia.

Juanamaría Cordones-Cook is associate professor at University of Missouri, Columbia. She is author of Teatro negro uruguayo (Editorial Graffiti, 1996) and Poetica de transgresión en la novelística de Luisa Valenzuela (Peter Lang Publishing, 1991). Member of the Uruguayan Academy of Letters.

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