History of the Poetry School of Medellín


Imagen II Escuela


Ist Poetry School in Medellin

Was convoked by PROMETEO in conjuction with The Poetry School in Vienna, with the colaboration of the Austrian poet Ide Hintze, between 10 and 21 June 1996.

The following poets presented courses :

  • Sainkho Namtchylak (Tuva) : Vocal laboratory - Voice and sound workshop.
  • Wolfgang Bauer (Austria) : Poetry and theater.
  • Ide Hintze (Austria) : Voice and body.
  • Juan Manuel Roca (Colombia) : Appreciation of the contemporary lyric.
  • Alicia Torres (Venezuela) : Poetry and the mythic imagination.
  • Julie Patton (USA) : Acoustic poetry.
  • Raúl Henao (Colombia) : Panorama of Iber-American Surrealist poetry.
  • Haroldo de Campos (Brazil), Werner Hörtner (Austria) and Oscar Castro García (Colombia) participated as lecturers.


IInd Poetry School in Medellin

Was held between 10 and 21 June 1997, and held the following courses :

  • Jean-Clarence Lambert (France) : Five commentaries on a thesis for open poetry.
  • Jaap Blonk (Holland) : Sound poetry.
  • Jean Portante (Luxembourg) : The silence of poetry and poetry of silence.
  • Werner Hörtner (Austria) : About the work of Ernst Jandl.
  • Carlos Bedoya (Colombia) : Literature and Rock.
  • Eufrasio Guzmán (Colombia) : Poetry, Myth and Individualization : the poetry of José Lezama Lima.

As a complement, several lectures were given by the indigenous Arhuac from the mountains of the Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta, in the north of Colombia.

The poet Eugenio Montejo from Venezuela, also participated as a lecturer.


IIIrd Poetry School in Medellin

Was held between 11 and 20 June 1998, and held the following courses:

  • Three sound poetry courses, directed by Dutch poet Jaap Blonk, who is an specialist in this contemporary poetry field:
    * A children´s course for kids between 8 and 11 years old (from June 8 to 11). As a result of this the kids did a performance at the opening ceremony of the Poetry School of Medellín.
    * The two adults courses were: one for beginners and a second one for advanced participants.
  • Chamanism and Modern Performance Art by Sainkho Namtchylak, a Siberian soloist from Tuva, (a teacher at the Poetry School of Vienna).
  • Image against Metaphore by Bernard Widder from Austria (also a teacher at the Poetry School of Vienna).
  • Nomads of Pyramids by Oscar González, a Colombian essay writer.
  • Spanish American Poetry by Argentinian poet Saúl Yurkievich.
  • Latin American Experimental poetry by experimental poet Clemente Padín, from Uruguay.
  • Translating is not betrying by Cuban poet Nancy Morejon, who is an specialist translator from French into Spanish.
  • Poetry Games and Public Poetry Acts by Josée Lapèyrere, from France.

All of them under the knowledge expansión related to the viewing of plural forms to express contemporary poetry and the emerging of a vanguard spirit for poetry creation related to diverse poetry areas.


IV Poetry School in Medellin

It was held between June 17 and 26, 1999. I was devbelopmed the following activities:


  • Momentos de la Poesía en Lengua Castellana by William Ospina (Colombia).
  • Poesía sonora by Paul Dutton (Canadá).
  • Vicente Huidobro, hambre de espacio sed de cielo by Eduardo Mitre (Bolívia).


  • Poesía y pensamiento with José Alberto Naranjo (Colômbia).
  • Poesía y sociedad with Juan Calzadilla (Venezuela).


Vth Poetry School of Medellin

June 4th to 9th, 2001


  • About poetry. By the Spanish poet Antonio Colinas.
  • Vicente Huidobro, or the heavenly attack. By the Chilean poet Oscar Hahn.
  • The laberynth as a metaphore and as an issue in the works of Jorge Luis Borges, Octavio Paz and Julio Cortázar.      Directed by the poet Martha Canfield (Uruguay-Italy).
  • Fernando Pessoa, Art and knowledge of a stranger. By poet Tarcisio Valencia from Colombia.
  • Dante Alighiere, William Blake and André Breton, three visionary moments in the western poetic tradition. Directed by Colombian poet Raúl Henao.
  • Poetry workshop for children, directed by the colombian poet of Wayuu ancestry, Vito Apshana.


  • Edda Armas (Venezuela), Contemporary Venezuelan poetry.
  • Yasuo Fujitomi (Japan), About concrete poetry.
  • Enzo Minarelli (Italy), Polipoetry.
  • Rita Imboden (Switzerland), Retorroman poetry.
  • Juan Bañuelos (Mexico), The living metaphore. Myth and reality of literature in Chiapas.
  • Elicura Chihuailaf (Chile), Indigenous poetry.
  • William Agudelo (Colombia), Workshop of "the word", factory of hope. About the experience of Solentiname.
  • Thomas Wolfhart (Germany), Literatur Express.
  • Amanda Hopkinson (England), English contemporary poetry.
  • Conversation with Américo Ferrari (Peru), about poetry translation.


VIth Poetry School of Medellín

Was realized during the XII International Poetry Festival of Medellín (June 21st to 30th, 2002)
de 2002and where the following courses took place:

  • Dissipating encounters by Sergio Lima (Brazil).
  • The Orígenes Group by Jorge Luis Arcos (Cuba).
  • The Haiku by Satoko Tamura (Japan).
  • Ceramics: Expressions of an ancient knowledge by Celia Cymbalista (Brazil).
  • The poetic and pedagogic expression in the life and work of “The Liberator” Simón Bolívar by Juvenal Herrera (Colombia).
  • Central American woman poets by Amanda Castro (Honduras).

Conference: History of the Nadaísta movement, in charge of Jotamario Arbeláez (Colombia).


VIIth Poetry School of Medellín

Was realized during the XIII International Poetry Festival of Medellín (June 14th to 21th, 2003).


  • Briceida Cuevas, (Mexico). Mayan Poetry.
  • Harold Alvarado Tenorio, (Colombia). A Disenchanted Generation.
  • Cecilia Vicuña, (Chile). Ubixic of the Saying: Other lecture of the Popol Vuh.
  • Rubén Izaguirre F. (Honduras). Self-Edition Workshop.
  • Renato Gómez, (Peru). The orbits bone” another point of view over the poem.
  • Tugrul Tanyol, (Turkey). Poetry, Meaning and Thought.
  • Amancio Prada (Spain). Poetic minstrel.
  • Víctor Rojas, (Colombia). Icelandic Sagas and Kenningards.


VIIIth Poetry School of Medellín

Was held from June 21 to June 25, 2004 parallel to the XIV International Poetry Festival of Medellín, with the following program:


  • Martha Canfield, (Uruguay-Italy): Poetry and Ecology.
  • Armando Romero (Colombia): Vanguard and Rearguard of Latin American poetry of the XX century.
  • Oscar González (Colombia): Poetry and eroticism.


  • Abdul Hadi Sadoun: The curse of Gilgamesh: The ultimate Iraqi poetry, 1980-2004.
  • Desmond Egan: Modern poets from Ireland.
  • Juan Manuel Roca: Luis Vidales: Not fearing laugh. In the centennial of his birth, and Colombian poetry in the second half of the XX century.
  • Samuel Vásquez: René Char: The subversive power of desire.
  • Luis Alberto Crespo: The region of the universe in René Char’s poetry.
  • Koko Kato: The Haiku.
  • Eduardo Espina: Julio Herrera y Reissig (1875-1910), an original one, a forgotten one Workshops.


  • Craig Czury: Poetry workshops with jail mates.
  • Nicole Cage-Florentiny: Poetry workshops with youngsters.
  • Horacio Benavides: Poetry workshops with children.


IX Poetry School of Medellín

June 24th to July 2nd, 2005.


  • Esteban Moore, (Argentina): Poetry in the Beat Generation, its poetics and its legacy.
  • Santiago Mutis, (Colombia): Poetry and The Plastic Arts. Links and distances.
  • Alejandra Castro, (Costa Rica): The avant-garde practices. Course and workshop.
  • José Gabriel Alimako and Bienvenido Arroyo (Mamo Kogui and Arhuaco from the Sierra Nevada of Santa Marta): Liberating spirit from the indigenous traditions of the Sierra Nevada.

Workshop: Mónica Velásquez Guzmán. (Bolivia): How to include the others in poetry?


  • William Agudelo, Colombia: The poetry workshops in Nicaragua.
  • Caridad Atencio Mendoza, Cuba:Simple verses. Traces in the Ending.
  • Ernesto Cardenal, Nicaragua: We are star dust.
  • Ibrahim Al-Zeben, Ambassador of Palestine in Colombia: The role of culture in the struggle of the Palestinian people.
  • Sergio Badilla, Chile: Transrealism: The Big Bang of poetry in the XXI century.
  • Ginette Ardila, Colombia: The literary avant-garde in Colombia.
  • Sam Hamill, United States: Poetry and Peace.
  • José Gabriel Alimako, Bienvenido Arroyo. Mamos of the Sierra Nevada : Treaties and Primitive History; The Arhuaco Universe.


  • Poetry reading and conversation with woman poets: Ana Mercedes Vivas (Colombia), Layla Al-Sayed (Bahrein), Mónica Velásquez Guzmán (Bolivia).
  • Conversation about playwrighting: Wole Soyinka (Nigeria).
  • Chant of Remoteness: Conversation with Juan Manuel Roca (Colombia).
  • Irak- United States. A real dialogue: Anwar Al Ghassani (Iraq), Rita Dove (United States), Ali Al Shalah (Iraq), Sam Hamill (United States).


X International Poetry School of Medellin

June 27 to July 2nd, 2006


  • Hablemos de Poesía, Antonio Porpetta (Spain)
  • Poesía Quechua del siglo XX, Odi González (Peru)
  • Literatura indígena de México, Jorge Miguel Cocom Pech (Maya people, Mexico)
  • Poesía y poética en Miguel de Cervantes, Ricardo Cuellar (Colombia)
  • Perdidos en el discurso: Jorge Isaacs, Rubén Darío y Delmira Agustini, Eduardo Espina (Uruguay)
  • Creación Poética, Alberto Rodríguez (Cuba)


  • Una utopía posible: cincuenta años del conservatorio de Castella, Osvaldo Sauma (Costa Rica)
  • Poesía negra hoy: ¿atavismos o indulgencia?, Rito Ramón Aroche (Cuba)
  • Poesía en traducción, Omar Pérez (Cuba)
  • Poesía colombiana de la segunda mitad del siglo XX, Juan Manuel Roca (Colombia)
  • La poesía otra forma de conocimiento. Iván Oñate (Ecuador)
  • Visión poética de los indígenas Anishinaabe, Al Hunter (Anishinaabe people, Canada)
  • La poesía en la lengua Zapoteca, Macario Matus (Zapoteca people, Mexico)
  • Ancestralismo, memoria y transculturalidad en la poesía indígena y mestiza de Chile, Jaime Luís Huenún (Mapuche people, Chile)


  • Colectivo de poetas del folio 114 de Guatemala, Doryan Bedoya (Colombia)
  • La Palabra y el Cuadro, Darío Villegas (Colombia)
  • Con la red de escritores escolares, Rosa María Chavez (Guatemala), Andrea Cote (Colombia), Néstor Francia (Venezuela)
  • La poesía, está siempre en estado de pregunta, Fabián Casas (Argentina)
  • Panorama de la poesía española a partir de los años 80, Guadalupe Grande (Spain)


  • Vanguardias latinoamericanas, Julián Malatesta (Colombia)
  • Apreciación de la poesía, Mery Yolanda Sánchez (Colombia)
  • Escritura creativa, para los niños de la Red de Escritores escolares, Talleristas del Proyecto Gulliver (Colombia), Osvaldo Sauma (Costa Rica).


XI International Poetry School of Medellin

June 14th to 22, 2007


  • Lindantonella Solano (Colombia, Wayuu Nation)
  • Fredy Chicangana (Colombia, Yanacona Nation)
  • Julieta Valero (Spain)
  • Hildebrando Pérez Grande (Peru)
  • Antonio Armenteros Alvárez (Cuba)
  • Fadir Delgado (Colombia)
  • Álvaro Marín (Colombia)
  • Nicolás Suescún (Colombia)
  • Pedro Enríquez (Spain)
  • Samuel Jaramillo (Colombia)
  • Oscar González (Colombia)
  • Giovanni Gómez (Colombia)
  • Gustavo Garcés (Colombia)
  • Víctor Rodríguez Núñez (Cuba)
  • Santiago Mutis (Colombia)
  • Norberto Salinas (Costa Rica)


  • Conversatorio con Gregorio Gómez (Paraguay, Guaraní Nation)
  • John Fredy Galindo (Colombia), Julieta Valero (Spain)
  • Fadir Delgado (Colombia), Ernesto Carrión (Ecuador)
  • Nicolás Suescún (Colombia), Tatiana Oroño (Uruguay)
  • Myriam Montoya (Colombia), Pedro Enríquez (Spain)
  • Luz Helena Cordero (Colombia), Omar Ortiz (Colombia)
  • Carlos Bedoya (Colombia), Dina Posada (El Salvador)
  • Oscar González (Colombia), Dina Posada (El Salvador)
  • Samuel Jaramillo (Colombia), Gustavo Garcés (Colombia)


XII School of Poetry of Medellin


Alan Mills (Guatemala).
Benjamín Chávez (Bolivia).
Lina Zerón (México).
Francisco Ruíz (Nicaragua).
Miguel Idelfonso (Perú).
Víctor Manuel Pinto (República Bolivariana de Venezuela).
Manuel García Verdecia (Cuba).
Gladys Carmagnola (Paraguay).



Morela Maneiro. “El imaginario poético en la cultura Kariña”.

Individual Poetry Readings and Conversation

Benjamín Ramón (Panama) y Jorge Galán (El Salvador)
Libeslay Bermúdez (Venezuela), Benjamín Chávez (Bolivia)
Jüri Talvet (Estonia)
Armando Orozco (Colombia), Frank Chipasula (Malawi).
Julio César Arciniegas (Colombia), Marcos Ana (España)
Jorge Iván Grisales (Colombia), Marjorie Evasco (Filipinas).
Jaime Quezada (Chile).
Gonzalo Márquez Cristo (Colombia), Eduardo Espina (Uruguay).


Juano Villafañe (Argentina): Poesía, crítica y cultura
Alex Fleites (Cuba): La poesía o el acto de atender en toda su pureza
José Zuleta (Colombia): La Poesía mucho más que versos
Armando Orozco (Colombia): Luis Vidales, el poeta y sus timbres
Chiqui Vicioso (República Dominicana): Mujer, Poder y Literatura
Juan Antillón (Costa Rica): Poder transformatorio de la poesía
Lyerka Bonanno (República Bolivariana de Venezuela): Amanecimos de Bala: Panorama Actual de la Poesía Joven Venezolana
Luz Mary Giraldo (Colombia): La poesía o la soledad de la experiencia
Gonzalo Márquez Cristo (Colombia): La pregunta del Origen


* * *

XIII School of Poetry of Medellin

July 5 to 11, 2009

Poetry is not only a literary genre, it is an attitude and also a way of thinking. Poetic thought is the origin of creation and transformation. Without poetry time, space, the world, would not exist: The world is a poetic creation. Men who do not understand the sense of poetry persist in the belief that life is possible without art, choose the way of negation which is a way without exits, a labyrinth, its walls war and death. It is because there those who want to confine us in those mazes, that we invent poetry, for freedom and for life. Poetry is the valid interpretation of the deepest dream of the human species: To make of life a work of art.

The School of Poetry of Medellín has as one of its goals to stimulate poetic thought. The courses, workshops and talks of the thirteenth version of the School of Poetry stand out because of the diversity of subjects. Poets of several countries will enrich with their experience of poetry this space of interchange and encounters.

The native Latin American poets bring with them their own particular concerns and subjects of oral cultures.  Graciela Huinao will tell us another version, the other side of the history of Chile, that of the Mapuche people; this condition of historical concealment she calls  the bicentenary lacuna. This —also the concern of the Aymara poet Luis Ayala— is due to the lack and difficulty of translations of the original Latin American languages, in which there are elements still untranslatable; there is in them, according to him, “a semantics that cannot be translated” because it is as translating a metaphor or the experience of living, a sort of double translation that is not purely linguistic because it contains a particular symbolical uniqueness, a collective life equivalent to the collective life of other peoples, a singular experience about which there is nothing clear linguistically speaking.

Jorge Riechmann, the Spanish poet, asserts that “the most monstrous fact about this monstrous civilizaion happens when we can no longer appreciate its monstrous character” —a sharp remark by a poet who also says that the contrary of poetry is marketing. “And how much does marketing pollute poetry…” Riechmann, as all poets, thinks in metaphors, not in logical concepts. This poet, sociologist and ecologist will give a course of several days on Ecology and poetry.

Another guest writer will be Joe Broderick, born in Australia into Irish parents, he will give a course on three Irishmen who have been awarded the Nobel Prize: William Butler Yeats, Samuel Beckett and Seamus Heaney. And poets from Ecuador, Colombia, Spain, Chile, Peru, Panama, Venezuela, Iraq and Nicaragua will contribute to the activities of the school with their reflections on poetry.

Since the first School of Poetry of Medellín in 1996, with some of the guest poets of the International Poetry Festival, the assistance of the public from the city and other parts of the country has been determinant for its continuity. People from other places of the world visiting Medellín at the time of the Festival have also come to the workshops, talks and courses of the School, interested in taking part in this extraordinary experience of poetry and incited by the expectation held in other countries about this important cultural event, characterized by a social sense of poetry that has made it influence the social life of the city and the cultural reality of Colombia.

Besides the courses, workshops and talks of the School of Poetry, there are also readings of poetry that become exchanges between the poets and the audience, in which the public has the opportunity to talk about the sense of poetry with the guest poets. The XIII School of Poetry is supported by Switzerland Funds for Culture and The Heinrich Böll Schteitung.


Participated poets in the
XIII School of Poetry of Medellin


Mercedes Roffé (Argentina), Carlos Vásquez, Tallulah Flórez, Gilma de los Ríos, Joaquín Mattos Omar, Omar Castillo, Miguel Iriarte, Nicolás Suescún, Álvaro Miranda, Jotamario Arbeláez, Angye Gaona, Luis Galar, Eugenia Sánchez Nieto, Carlos Enrique Sierra, Víctor Raúl Jaramillo, Jesús Gómez (Colombia); María Montero (Costa Rica), Roberto Fernández Retamar, Adelaida de Juan Seiler (Cuba), Rodrigo Verdugo (Chile), Graciela Huinao (Mapuche Nation, Chile), Yvon Gordon Vailakis (Ecuador), Rosa Chávez (Maya Nation, Guatemala), Joe Broderick (Ireland), Francisco de Asís Fernández, Gloria Gabuardi (Nicaragua); Moravia Ochoa (Panama), José Luis Ayala (Aymara Nation, Peru), William Osuna, Antonio Trujillo (Venezuela); Jorge Riechmann (Spain), Tahar Bekri (Tunisia).


The XIII Poetry School of Medellin was supported by the Switzerland Embassy in Bogota and the Heinrich Boll Stiftung and its office of South America.

Fifteen years of the International Poetry School of Medellín


By Jairo Guzmán

Five years after the foundation of the International Poetry Festival of Medellín (1991) there is created, in 1996, the Poetry School of Medellín. It arose from the need to project, in a more consistent manner, the knowledge acquired by each guest poet in his or her personal career. This vital (experience-related) way of transmitting knowledge connected to poetry and its multiple forms of expression and listening has opened a new access path towards an authentically open, flexible pedagogy, which acts constructively. This is due to its efficiency, arising from a joyful conjunction between participating poets and an audience increasingly conversant with poetic references and possessed of creative skills, which have enabled the loving exercise of encounters, in order to build a spirit strengthened by the beauty, light and fire of poetry, and the impetus of the poets who deal with the great battles of the spirit against tragic times. 

The first Poetry School of Medellín became possible thanks to the sponsorship of and courses taught by poets from the Poetry School of Vienna, whose director, poet and performer Christian Ide Hintze, was very committed to it. That moment ushers in a new stage in the social and pedagogic scope of the International Poetry Festival of Medellín, enabling the audience to have a higher level of knowledge about the different trends and forms of expression in contemporary poetry. This experience, new in the Latin American scene, has had a positive impact on the audience it has built, thanks to its creative effort and will, expanding luminous awareness, and determined participation, committed to an increasingly consistent spiritual and cultural transformation. 

On the basis of this transformation is a great desire to be a part of the different worldwide proposals acting very constructively in the growth of awareness. Between its foundation and 2010, 14 issues of the Poetry School of Medellín have taken place, in which 91 courses, 76 conferences, 57 workshops and 43 activities between colloquiums and panels have been offered, all for free and benefiting around 5,000 people. All the courses and workshops are planned, designed and developed by renowned poets from different countries, who also take part in the Festival. 

The fifteenth birthday of the Poetry School of Medellín was held between July 4 and 8, 2011, within the framework of the 21º International Poetry Festival of Medellín, which involved poets from different countries around the world, with dynamic activities for the exchange and transfer of information and knowledge. We enjoyed the company of poet Christian Ide Hintze, who actively participated in the celebration. 

They participated to teach courses the poets: Ban'ya Natsuishi (Japan), Christian Ide Hintze (Austria), J. M. Calleja (Spain), Aitana Alberti (Spain-Cuba), Waldo Leyva (Cuba), Rodolfo Häsler (Cuba-Spain), Luis Alberto Crespo (Venezuela), Faumelisa Manquepillán (Chile, Mapuche), Triunfo Arciniegas, Eufrasio Guzmán, Alfredo Vanin, Javier Naranjo (Colombia). 

The following poets teached poetry workshops: Fernando Valverde (Spain), Alex Pausides, Waldo Leyva (Cuba), Marvin García (Guatemala), Lucy Cristina Chau (Panama), David Juárez (El Salvador), Carmen Ollé (Perú), Rodolfo Dada (Costa Rica). 

The following poets gave conferences: Rati Saxena (India), Marco Antonio Campos (Mexico), José Mármol (Dominican Republic), Graciela Araoz (Argentina), Zhao Zhenjiang (China), Céline Hémon (France), J. M. Calleja (Spain), Patricia Ariza, Fredy Chicangana (Yanacona Nation, Colombia). 

And the following guest poets will give poetry readings and engage in conversations with the audience: Tania Tomé; (Mozambique), Were Were Liking (Cameroon), Chiwoniso Maraire (Zimbabwe), Chris Abani (Nigeria), Shailja Patel (Kenya), Lebogang Mashile (South Africa), Antonio Gonçalves (Angola), Derek Walcott (Santa Lucia), Thiago de Mello, Ramón Palomares (Venezuela), Zakaria Mohammed (Palestine), Kamran Mir Hazar (Afganistán), Lello Voce (Italy), Cees Nooteboom (The Netherlands), Philip Hammial (Australia), Oscar Hernández Monsalve, Víctor Gaviria (Colombia). 

Each year, during the realization of The International Poetry Festival of Medellín, The Poetry School of Medellín opens its doors freely to nearly 300 students.

Within the educational activities of The Corporation of Art and Poetry Prometeo, and with the support of the Foundation France Libertés, during 2006 Prometeo developed the Gulliver Project, which consists in the realization of 16 workshops of literary appreciation, stimulation of reading and poetry creation for 400 children of public schools in the 16 popular districts (comunas) of Medellín. At the end of these workshops it was published an anthology with the works realized by the children.

Última actualización: 06/10/2018