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Poet Alberto Blanco

Acclaimed Latin Poet To Read At D.G. Wills’ Bookstore

Above: Mexican poet Alberto Blanco.

Aired 12/12/11 on KPBS Midday Edition.

Award-winning Mexican poet Alberto Blanco will be reading from a new collection of his work, "Afterglow," at D. G. Wills' Bookstore on Saturday December 17.

Transcript

Award-winning Mexican poet Alberto Blanco will be reading from a new collection of his work, "Afterglow," at D. G. Wills' Bookstore on Saturday December 17.

Alberto Blanco is one of Latin America's most acclaimed poets and his interests range from chemistry to art to jazz. Poet all show up in his body of work. Poet Jose Emilio Pocheco has written of Blanco that "in his poems, nothing is lost...everything streams into his words."

Blanco has published more than two dozen books of poetry as well as essays on art and books for children (some illustrated by his wife Patricia Revah). He has won numerous awards including the "Alfonso X el Sabio" from San Diego State University in 2002 for excellence in literary translation. In 2008 he was awarded a Guggenheim Grant for his poetry. His interests and work have taken him around the globe. He has pursued Asian studies with a specialization in Chinese culture, and he accepted a residency in Italy that was funded by the Rockefeller Foundation.

Reviewer Grace Cavalieri wrote of "Afterglow" and Blanco: "The trick for a translator is to keep the melody and not miss the harmony. Perhaps because Blanco was a chemist by profession, he has a passion for precision and order. Craft is the cage that holds his huge existential themes. We’d be lost without Blanco’s careful cadence and supreme control of the line. His poetry is an unending silver ribbon of thought, sometimes appearing without premeditated unity or symmetry, but once assembled, the poems are perfect performances on the page. These poems tackle meditations on the biggest issues of love, life, death and make it all new. I’m grateful when ordinary words, world weary, are dazzled into a new order."

Here is one of the poems he he will read from on Midday:

SQUARE ROOT OF TWO

When lightning arrives enchantment ends

and time commences.

When time arrives

concentration concludes

and the couple begins.

When the couple arrives

duration ends

and harvest commences.

When autumn arrives

harvest concludes

and knowledge begins.

Mexican poet Alberto Blanco will read from "Afterglow" on Saturday December 17th at D.G. Wills Books, 7461 Girard Avenue, La Jolla, Ca. 92037 (858)456-1800.

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