We have used a language common to our hearts
Photo: Spencer Tunick, (AP).
The International Poetry Festival of Medellín is also the oak of farewells and meetings, the door to other times in the renewed place of song that never ends in itself. We are leaving behind the ominous season to go to the new summons, in the bare encounter of the origin of language. A wave embraces the world in the spirit of the ocean. An iridiscent tear of the sun floods the labyrinths of pain with savage joy. A radiation of vastness goes through the bodies, and over our souls. The lost unity is in everyone, in the heavy exchange of fire. A conclusive consensus deepens the root of existence.
In the closing of the 18th Festival last year, televised in the city, the Spanish poet Marcos Ana said to the public: “Envoys of many peoples of this Earth on which we live came to Medellín, and I would have liked to talk more with them, I would like that languages were universal as love is, as music is, as great ideas are universal… But in spite of the differences of our languages in these days we have used a language common to all our hearts, the language of poetry, the language of freedom and hope; it was enough to look at one another, to shake hands, to know that we were branches of the same tree, the beautiful tree of freedom, and because of this everything has been possible in our understanding and the common happiness of these days.”
Against every gloomy forecast, poetry is the legend against reason, that oblivion does not destroy, the force that unhinges death and becomes a superior life, springing up again. We scarcely see its radiant matter, its smiling, never subdued, splendor.
The poets who have confirmed their participation are: Rashidah Ismaili AbuBakr (Benin), Fatma Quandil (Egypt), Ifi Amadiume (Nigeria), Amadou Lamine Sall (Senegal), Daniel Kunene, Zindzi Mandela (South Africa), Kangni Alem (Togo), Tahar Bekri (Tunisia), Mercedes Roffé (Argentina), Matilde Casazola (Bolivia), Nicole Brossard (Canada), Jotamario Arbeláez, Carlos Vásquez, Eugenia Sánchez Nieto, Miguel Iriarte, Tallulah Fórez, Nicolás Suescún, Álvaro Miranda, Joaquín Mattos Omar, Liana Mejía, Carlos Enrique Sierra, Omar Castillo, Gilma de los Ríos, Víctor Raúl Jaramillo, Luisa Aguilar, Jesús Gómez, Angye Gaona, Luis Galar (Colombia), María Montero, Graciela Huinao (Chile, Mapuche Nation), Rodrigo Verdugo (Chile); Roberto Fernández Retamar, Luis Yusseff (Cuba), Yvon Gordon Vailakis (Ecuador), Mario Noel Rodríguez (El Salvador); Rosa Chávez (Guatemala, Maya Nation), John Agard, Grace Nichols (Guyana), Édouard Glissant (Martinica), Francisco de Asis Fernández, Gloria Gabuardi (Nicaragua), Moravia Ochoa (Panama), José Luis Ayala (Perú, Aymara Nation), Yván Silén (Puerto Rico), Arthur Sze, Jayne Cortez, Jack Hirschman (United States), Luis Bravo (Uruguay); Antonio Trujillo, William Osuna (Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela), Fadhil Al-Azzawi, Anwar Al-Ghassani (Iraq), Usha Akella (India), Fathieh Saudi (Jordan), Fuad Rifka (Lebanon), Ghassan Zaqtan (Palestine), Alice Sun-Cua (Philippines), Hussein Habasch (Syria), Nguyen Quang Thieu (Vietnam), Peter Holvoet-Hanssen (Bélgium), Jan Wagner (Germany), Ersi Sotiropoulos (Greece), Sigurður Pálsson (Iceland), Guido Oldani (Italy), Inger Elisabeth Hansen, Torgeir Schjerven (Norway), Agneta Falk (Sweden), Jorge Riechmann (Spain), Klaus Merz (Switzerland); Henk van der Waal (The Netherlands), Aazam Abidov (Uzbekistan).
The Festival includes140 activities, which involve 70 poets of almost 45 countries; activities includes 93 collective poetry readings, 11 individual readings with discussions and 15 events in other 10 Colombian cities. At the same time, 14 poetry workshops, five courses (of three sessions each one) and five conferences will take place within the framework of XIII the Poetry School of Medellín.