22. ilb 07. - 17.09.2022

Coral Bracho

Portrait Coral Bracho
© Crispin Hughes

Coral Bracho was born in Mexico City in 1951. Bracho’s poetic work is considered to be a cornerstone of Mexican poetry. Her characteristic style, labelled by the Argentinian poet Néstor Perlongher »Latin American Neo-Baroque poetry«, is already well developed in her first collection »Peces de piel fugaz« (1977; t: »Fish with Fugacious Skin«, partly published in the anthology »Firefly Under the Tongue«, New Directions, N.Y. 2008, translated by poet Forrest Gander). In the poems intricate syntax strings together a plethora of images to portray the richness of nature, fleeting sensations and erotic invocations, with references at once to the text itself and to a metaphysical dimension. The rapturous flow of speech and labyrinth of associations create a feeling of dizziness, suggesting the extensive, quasi-mystical unity of the world, objects and occurrences. The small is reflected in the large, the large in the small, and new experiences of understanding are developed. This rich tapestry of language also progresses through tranquil reposes of cryptic and allegorical images and descriptive sentences.

Bracho was awarded the Premio Nacional de Poesía Aguascalientes for her second collection of poems »El ser que va a morir« (1982; t: The Being that is Going to Die). Her first three volumes were reissued several times and collected in »Huellas de luz« (1994; t: Tracks of Light), which was followed by the highly commended »La voluntad del ámbar« (1998; t: The Disposition of Amber).

»If poetry has a social function, without a doubt it in no way consists of asserting perceptions, mindsets or methods of communication. It is much more a means of opening channels for emotion and communication, creating possibilities for articulating thoughts and patterns of emotional expression and perspectives in order to reconsider our existence in this world«, Coral Bracho commented when awarded the »Premio Xavier Villaurrutia« for her collection »Ese espacio, ese jardín« (2003; t: That Space, That Garden).

The last volume of poems »Cuarto de hotel« (2007; t: Hotel Room) evokes an existential search and orientation by means of a pivotal allegory. Several of her books have been translated, and Bracho’s poems appear within and beyond Latin America in newspapers, anthologies and collections of literature, for example in Spain, France, Italy, Finland, Canada, Japan and the USA. The author has also written two collections of poems for children. She is a member of the Arts Council »Sistema Nacional de Creadores de Arte« and was a stipendiary of the Guggenheim Foundation. Bracho lives in Mexico City.

© international literature festival berlin