Collected here in one bilingual edition are new translations of four small books of poems that were published during Federico García Lorca's lifetime and span his most creative years. First Songs, poems inspired by the Andalusian countryside are comparable in style and theme to those in his masterpiece Poem of the Deep Song. This charming little book was given by Lorca to his friend Manuel Altolaguirre and his wife as a gift to their first child. Ode to Walt Whitman, a passionate meditation on homosexuality in a society that proscribes it, is perhaps the best-known book to have come out of the poet's New York Cycle of poems, a damning vision of urban life under capitalism. Perhaps Lorca's finest poem, A Flood of Tears for Ignacio Sanchez Mejías, is a moving elegy to his friend, a renowned bullfighter who was also a writer and a hero to a generation of poets. With Six Galician Poems, written in the Galician language, Lorca returns to themes of the simple life and folklore of the Spanish people. Published only a few months before the Spanish Civil War broke out, this book – a classic of Galician literature – never won the prominence it deserved.
"His real impact, however, surely comes from the stark vividness of his imagery, his ability to conjure up primal subjective realms of love and death: The guitar makes dreams weep. The sobbing of lost souls escapes through its round mouth. And like the tarantula it spins a large star to trap the sighs floating in its black, wooden water tank." —David H. Rosenthal
". . . García Lorca's poem dedicated to the New York poet is nothing short of beautiful. The translation does not detract from the emotion and respect that García Lorca has for Walt Whitman." —A.J. Ortega, Front Porch Journal
Federico García Lorca (1898-1936) was a poet, playwright, and theater director. He was well-known as a member of the Generation of '27 who introduced symbolism, futurism, and surrealism to Spanish literature. City Lights Publishers also published another book of poetry by Federico García Lorca titled Poem of the Deep Song.
Carlos Bauer is the translator of García Lorca's Poem of the Deep Song (City Lights Books), Cries from a Wounded Madrid (Swallow Press), and The Public and Play without a Title: Posthumous Plays (New Directions). He has also translated the work of contemporary writers into Spanish.