Tallulah Flores
(Colombia, 1951)   
Tallulah Flores

Flores was born in Barranquilla in northern Colombia but completed her studies in linguistics in Romania. She has dedicated most of her life to holding a chair in Social Communications and Journalism at the Universidad del Norte, and to the teaching of literature and film analysis in the Unión Hebrew School. She has published three books of poems to great critical acclaim. Her poems have been translated into Romanian and Hungarian, and in 2003 she was awarded the Great International Poetry Prize of the Curtea de Arges, Romania.

Flores’ first book, Poesía para armar (Poetry to Assemble), illustrated by the architect Ignacio Consuegra Bolívar, is a selection of the poems inspired by her experiences in the 1970s in Romania and Eastern Europe. When her second book, Voces del tiempo (Voices of Time) was published in 1993 in a beautiful hand-crafted edition illustrated with 18 photos by Fabiana Flores, the important poet, critic and prose writer, Juan Manuel Roca wrote that it had all the desirable characteristics of literature in the new millenium according to the Italian Writer Italo Calvino. In his posthumously published book, Six Memos for the Next Millenium, he writes “…they have lightness, quickness, exactitude, visibility and multiplicity, links which are the aesthetic premise for the century that already races towards us like a hound.” He also refers to Flores’ “declining to write a merely biological poetry which has been the game preserve but also the prison, of the type of poem written by most women around here”.

In her third book, Cinematográfica (Cinematographic), the eponymous poem is divided into eleven sections and the author writes in the prologue: “Gone over, the line described by the poem is not straight but circular. The title of the poem is an unequivocal informant telling us that what is related, described and thought out in it, is a fiction. The sign of History and of all our daily personal stories is unreality.”

Her last book, Nombrar las cosas (To Name Things), which will be published next year, already has the backing of important critics such as the Cuban, Rufo Caballero, who wrote that Flores is “…one of the singular voices of contemporary Latin American poetry… her grammar is perfect and subtle, her syntax symmetrical, and the sensuousness of composition allows me to say that the poet has reached maturity in her interior rhyme. In her verse there is a dense, expectant, subtle violence… her sensitive feeling for drama is akin to the births of the world the impressive Cuban poet Dulce María Loynaz assisted at.”


© M.I. (Translated by Nicolás Suescún)


Poesía para armar
(Poetry to be Assembled), Plaza y Janés, Bogotá, 1986
Voces del tiempo (Voices of Time), Ediciones Luna Hiena, Bogotá, 1993
Cinematográfica (Cinematographic), Instituto Distrital de Cultura, Barranquilla, 1997


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