April 21, 2021

Antonio Gamoneda reflects on poetry at the Casablanca Book Fair

Antonio Gamoneda reflects on poetry at the Casablanca Book Fair

Do not dare to ask Antonio Gamoneda (Oviedo, 1931) what poetry is because the author is not in this world for it, but, rather, to create, to do his work. "It takes too many centuries trying to make a correct definition and we have not yet found it," he explained during his speech at the Casablanca Book Fair (SIEL). Without wanting to enter into their own descriptions, the 2006 Cervantes Prize points directly to San Juan de la Cruz, "the summit of Spanish poetry", to find an outlet for the issue; concretely, to two points of the religious: «Not knowing knowing» and «understanding not understood». For Gamoneda "is the closest thing that has been written and said about the origin of poetry", so, in the same way that marked the saint, he adds: "It could also be understood as thought unthinkable."

Without further interpretations of what verses are, the author stops in his "generative course," he says. Of what and how it is born. "You could talk about poetry from the first word that was pronounced because you had the ability to articulate a sound and thus enter language. It created the intellectual presence of an object that, like the apple, for example, was simply to eat ».

At his side, Khalid Raissouni, his Arabic translator, looked at him and presented him as "a very singular voice of Spanish poetry", as "a poet that you can not accept in a generation because it is beyond generations and that has finished accumulating a work with something perfect ». A trajectory with two well differentiated parts in which he found "an essential period of silence", the refuge of the poet for fifteen years. Meaningful and interpretable silence in which Raissouni prefers not to enter, but to highlight "a resurgence in which he gives a change to his previous trajectory".

But the Gamoneda of today, the one that visits the flag of Spain the SIEL like head of poster, is not the one of yesteryear. Now look towards the end: «All my actions go through the mirror of death. When he writes, the poet does not forget that he is progressively approaching the end and all his communications ", says a man who claims not to be poetry. «I am only the subject of my verses, the man who contemplates all reality, the tangible and the intangible». But he is also the writer who is moved by reading his verses in Arabic "because he has not translated without more, but has put on the harmonious musculature that he needed to put rhythm to the text".

Poetry that, as he explained in Casablanca, is an act that requires three keys: the rhythmic birth, the creation and the revelation of a reality. «And I try to get closer to the three». Although, for Gamoneda, is far from literature, "and I will not stop saying it," he says: "Literature uses the language with which we communicate in an aesthetic way, creating works of art and reaching sublime levels, but the poetry does not name that external world, but it communicates the emanation of one's own life, including the more physical senses ». Another language, "a reality in itself, like breathing". The intimacy of the poet, nobody else, told with common words that change their definition: "They stop being the same. They have another meaning that is not in the use of normal communication, nor in dictionaries, but it does have the sense that the poet himself gives him by naming that reality. The law of poetry is not the same as that of the best literature ».


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