Luis García Montero Reading at the University of Washington

Luis Farcia Montero
Luis García Montero Reading 3/3/2010

The Spanish poet Luis García Montero read at the University tonight (3/3/2010) to a packed room of students and academics. He read 8 poems from his body of work that the graduate students had translated into English. I’m not that familiar with Spanish poets and so had no idea what to expect, although I had seen his interview on El Público Lee. He is considered one of Spain’s best poets and is considered a realist poet who uses the elements from the everyday to express emotion or the experience of living. The poems that he read were very interesting and would be worth a return to. While he is a realist, the poems did have a good sense of imagery and didn’t slide into that reportage that is so real it describes nothing but itself and seems to afflict many of the American poets I’ve read and seen recently. Before each poem he explained where the ideas came from and they were often from the most basic experiences, but went beyond the moment he explained and captured something about modern living. The one I remember most was his poem to his mother. It was a reflection on the dreams she sacrificed to her family that in the era of Franco were not possible. And although he fought with her as young man who was experiencing the transition to democracy, he now sees her as someone who was so much more.

2 thoughts on “Luis García Montero Reading at the University of Washington

  1. Thanks for this note about the poetry reading… LGM is my favorite Spanish poet, a true source of inspiration. I’m glad I was out of the country when he came because otherwise I would have been very upset that I had missed his visit because I had no idea he was coming… I only found a few days ago he had even been here. How do you find out about events like this??

  2. A friend of mine works at the UW and told me about it. It was mostly a Spanish Department thing. Anyone could come, but they didn’t really publicize it. I’ve noticed they don’t really publicize things outside of the academic world very well, nor does the Cervantes Institute which is based there. I would like to see more interaction with places like Elliott Bay Books or the Hugo House to get a broader literary culture going. If you are interested, I’ll post them a head of time as I learn of them, although, we are pretty close to summer so I don’t think we’ll have too much in the near future.

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