Jenna's Reviews > In Search of Duende

In Search of Duende by Federico García Lorca
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's review
Jan 01, 2011

really liked it
bookshelves: poetry-in-translation
Read in January, 2011

I have a new appreciation of Lorca after reading this book, which situates some of his best poems in the context of some stunningly well-written prose essays that spell out his ars poetica. Before I read this book, I confess I often felt frustrated by Lorca's insistence that poetry must be mysterious: the wispy, allusive, fragmentary feel of some of his poems (especially the short ones) made them feel incomplete to me; I wanted to see a fuller development of the themes he was setting up, not just a ritualistic naming of a few poetic-sounding nouns ("death," "balcony," "oranges," "wheat") followed by the exclamatory repetition of a refrain that I had only just begun to understand. Reading the beautifully clear essays in this book gave me a better understanding of what Lorca was aiming to achieve in his poetry; moreover, the three poems at the end of this collection are true masterpieces that demonstrate exactly how mystery, in the hands of a talented poet, can be an asset rather than a liability to a poem.
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message 1: by Lada Fleur (new)

Lada Fleur Genius, poetic genius. Beautiful too.

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