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Song of the Simple Truth: The Complete Poems of Julia de Burgos

3.91  ·  Rating Details ·  415 Ratings  ·  16 Reviews
Song of the Simple Truth (Canción de la verdad sencilla) is the first bilingual edition of Julia de Burgos' complete poems. Numbering more than 200, these poems form a literary landmark—the first time her poems have appeared in a complete edition in either English or Spanish. Many of the verses presented here had been lost and are presented here for the first time in print ...more
Paperback, 524 pages
Published November 1st 1995 by Curbstone Books (first published 1982)
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May 22, 2009 Marina is currently reading it
Its a collection of poems, so I've been reading them one at a time. My favorite is "To Julia de Burgos" in which the author splits herself into the intimate who writes and the social person who bears her name (don't we all have a little of that). I give you an excerpt:

You are the cold doll of social lies,
and me, the virile starburst of the human truth.

You, honey of courtesan hypocrisies; not me;
in all my poems I undress my heart.

You are like your world, selfish; not me
who gambles everything bett
Jan 26, 2009 Analiza rated it it was amazing
Ahhh Julia!!! I wish that all my friends in the states could speak Spanish so I can share this poetry with them.

Julia siempre, siempre Julia...
J.M. Hushour
Aug 03, 2016 J.M. Hushour rated it it was amazing
De Burgos' poetry, much thought lost, many collected here for the first time, falls into one those impossible niches that finds the reader struggling for comparison. She's passionate--many of these poems are stricken and sickly paeans to whatever love might mean--and at the same time wrings out of herself a well-grounded sense of doom (little is known of her life, but it didn't end well, that's for sure) that is light and playful and horrifying that you can't help but delight in skipping along t ...more
Jason Leary
Oct 28, 2011 Jason Leary rated it really liked it
A feminist before the term existed. Thoughtful translation of an unknown, but important, writer.
David Auerbach
Dec 04, 2012 David Auerbach rated it did not like it
With all due respect for the good works of Jack Agüeros, this translation is extremely flawed. A close examination reveals perhaps a misunderstanding of themes and intent, awkward and literal renderings, misspellings, usage and grammar issues, to name a few of the thorny bits. A good example can be found in "I Was the Quietest One," which is a terrible botch job. Justice needs to be done for this great poet, yet you won't find much justice here.
Jan 24, 2009 Jana added it
i didn't actually read this whole book, (it's huge!!) but i skimmed through and read poems here and there. she's not my favorite style but i really respect her work and her history, which was politically feminist in puerto rico in her time.
I'm so bored by (heterosexual) love poetry, and poetry about the sea, and (heterosexual) love poetry involving the sea.

I did quite like some of the poems not about love - i.e. Nothing, To Julia de Burgos, I Was My Own Route, I Was the Quietest One, Poem for my Death, Shipwreck of a Dream.
Tara Betts
Aug 07, 2007 Tara Betts added it
Shelves: favorites
"To Julia de Burgos" is one of my favorite poems. Jack Agueros is also a good poet in his own right. He is working on a volume in translation of similar scope on Cuban poet Jose Marti's work with his daughter Natalia Agueros.
Penelope, pronounced comme tu veux
"I wanted to be like men wanted me to be:
an attempt at life:
a game of hide and seek with my being.
But I was made of nows." 1st stanza of I was my own route. Need I say more? Read it, read it, read it.
Lilliam Rivera
Aug 30, 2009 Lilliam Rivera rated it it was amazing
I don't normally read poetry but Julia de Burgos words are quite powerful. I love that the Spanish and English translation are right next to each other. The intro is also great, offering up what is little known of this great Puerto Rican poet.
Mar 15, 2008 Shanali marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2017-challenge
Author of my favorite and most patriotic poem of all times. Need to read ASAP all of her works.
Mar 29, 2010 Areliez rated it it was amazing
MY #ONE FAVORITE POET!!! She is the best!
Oct 31, 2009 Eileenplaceres rated it it was amazing
Collection of beautiful poems.
Apr 09, 2008 Susan rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Everyone
Recommended to Susan by: My future mother-in-law
I love this book. I especially love the poem called I Was My Own Route. This as a wonderful, feminist tear-jerker poem for me. This book also provides the poems in the original Spanish.
Jose Torrado
May 06, 2013 Jose Torrado rated it really liked it
Shelves: still-reading
Soy flauta de vida maltratada
y quiero ser silencio.

Amen. Julia gigante Puertorriquena .
Jul 13, 2007 Ed rated it really liked it
Powerful, exiled Puerto Rican poet.
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Julia de Burgos (February 17, 1914 – July 6, 1953) is considered by many as the greatest poet to have been born in Puerto Rico, and along with Gabriela Mistral, is considered as one of the greatest poets of Latin America. She was also an advocate for the independence of Puerto Rico and an ardent civil rights activist for women and African/Afro-Caribbean writers.
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“Yo, múltiple, como en contradicción” 5 likes
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