Z e t e o
Reading, Looking, Listening, . . . Questioning

Mark Strand in a Colombian Páramo

Categories: Ana Maria Caballero, ZiR


Mark Strand Poetry  I am writing this week from Roldanillo, Colombia, a tiny town toward the west of the country.  I will be here all week attending the Colombian Women Poets Festival for the first time ever.

The people I’ve met are astounding in their talent and their kindness. Please check back next week as I plan to share my experience participating in this encounter.

For now, I leave you with a poem by former U.S. Poet Laureate Mark Strand, taken a few months ago in a páramo, a cloud forest located at more than 3,000 meters above sea level. Few nations in the world possess these natural wonders, which are rich sources of water, so Colombia is lucky to be among the countries on the planet with the most páramos.

 

Once Upon a Cold November Morning

 

I left the sunlit fields of my daily life and went down in the

hollow mountain, and I discovered, in all its chilly glory,

the glass castle of my other life. I could see right through it,

and beyond, but what could I do with it? It was perfect, irre-

ducible, and worthless except for the fact that it existed.

 

– By Ana Maria Caballero, Zeteo Contributing Writer

 

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