The Outrage of the Years, Harold Alvarado Tenorio
Translated from Spanish by Rowena Hill

The work of the Colombian poet Harold Alvarado Tenorio, translated in this defining selection by the Welsh poet Rowena Hill, is a complex of representations of so-called modernity and its consequences. Doctor of Letters from the Universidad Complutense of Madrid, Professor of the Literatures of Latin America at the Universidad de Colombia, President of Fundación Arquitrave, which publishes poetry books and the prestigious Arquitrave magazine (the only poetry review in Colombia with both virtual and printed editions), Alvarado Tenorio has received the praise of a wide range of writers for his work.

Exuberant and delicate, sensuous and intellectual, the poetry of Harold Alvarado Tenorio is strikingly original within Latin American poetry today. I am delighted to celebrate Rowena Hill's translations, which recast in English a poetic voice that is suggestive sometimes of Cavafy and Borges and yet is also all its own.

Daniel Balderston.

I read and reread with great pleasure your Libro del extrañado. I feel very close to this poetry of yours, so brilliantly centered in combing the terrain of experience. I think you have got right the discursive, reflective tone and the rhythmical elegance of the means of expression. I am really happy to be able to tell you this.

José Manuel Caballero Bonald.

Although he is now one of the best known names in Colombian poetry, and has helped to make Spanish poetry known there, Alvarado Tenorio's poetry is very little known in Spain. Speaking of his own experience, biographical, direct or reflective, always unorthodox in his attitudes, Alvarado Tenorio seeks the plenitude of life (or feels nostalgia for that plenitude), so that some would say he is seeking life in its excesses. Swinging between Borges and Kavafys (less incompatible than an unprepared reader might think), his passionate and wise poems (which also travel through many places) are examples of the best twentieth century poetry. Restless, disturbing and unorthodox, from sex to politics.

Luis Antonio de Villena.

I have read your Summa del cuerpo , and find myself completely identified with this litany about time and about love that makes its way into our flesh and memory. Short, strongly felt poems, a book as organic as a single poem.

Affonso Romano de Sant´anna.

Behind the diatribes, the verbal daring, the rudeness, the immediacy, are hidden a nostalgia for childhood, a tenacious melancholy, the lucid disenchantment of knowing too much, the harshness of knowing one is alone with one's burden of delicacy, memories, distance and refinement of soul.

Juan Liscano.