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“La tierra de Calliope” Poetry Book Showcases Women Authors from the Strait

Rosario Pérez | Photos: ©Fran Montes, ReachExtra

“La tierra de Calliope” (“The land of Calliope”) is not just a book, but it is first and foremost a gift… A gift from Editorial Imagenta on its 10th anniversary and an offering by 31 authors whose verses and, similar and yet different voice, make up this poetic anthology…”

La tierra de Calliope Algeciras Editorial Imagenta book poems Strait Campo de Gibraltar

This April, I had the opportunity to make the above statement during a presentation at the “Words in the Museum” Micro Book Fair in Alegciras – and as I recall the details for ReachExtra, I still feel the same exhilaration at seeing my own verses inside such an exciting literary project next to all the other creative artists from the Campo de Gibraltar – and even more gratifying after such a tough year for culture.

La tierra de Calliope Algeciras Editorial Imagenta book poems Strait Campo de Gibraltar

“La tierra de Calliope”, whose prologue is written by journalist Juan José Téllez, was presented for the first time at the book fair, at a reduced capacity, and chaired by the Deputy Mayor of Algeciras, Javier Vázquez Hueso.

Also in attendance was the editor of the book, Ildefonso Sena, and writer Miguel Vega, who read a poem about the relationship between women and poetry written by Mar Marchante, who is featured in the anthology.

Other authors within “The land of Calliope”, who were able to attend, shared the magic after the close of the official presentation in an impromptu reading and recitatin of poems, in the cloister of the Museum:

La tierra de Calliope Algeciras Editorial Imagenta book poems Strait Campo de Gibraltar

Emy Luna, María de Grandy, Ascensión Sotomayor, Nieves Buscató, Isabel Espinosa, Conchi Collado, Julia Jiménez, Cecilia Quílez, Luz Mota, Conchi Rodriguez, Carmen Sánchez Melgar, Almoraima Ruiz, Mariluz Terán, Maribel Sánchez González, Inmaculada Visuara, Nuria Ruiz…

We missed were leading poets such as Paloma Fernández Gomá or Rosa Romojaro, who were out of Algeciras, and the memory of the departed and always remembered Lola Peche, Paqui Galán, Ana María Rodríguez Melguizo and Julia Guerra hung in the air and in our hearts.

Rosario Perez Villanueva

“This region has a great deal of local and imported art”, Idelfonso Sena said: He was visibly happy for being able to celebrate Imagenta’s 10th anniversary with this book. From humble and brave beginnings, Imagenta, which was set up in 2011 at his home in Tarifa has now become one of the most prolific publishing houses in Cádiz and the whole of Andalucía with 167 titles produced so far. This has given many authors the opportunity of going to market whereas otherwise they would never have been able to get their works onto the bookshelves.

In the words of Sena, La tierra de Calliope is “a well-deserved tribute to the poets of the Campo de Gibraltar, intended to pay homage to the women creators of culture, but also to celebrate our birthday”.

“Let us stay in the land of Calliope, the Greek muse of poetry and eloquence, in this glorious and memorable day” Juan Emilio Ríos said, who presides over the José Román Atheneum and who wrote the following text on the back cover of the book: “these are the many female poetic voices who cultivated their verses in our small territory and who, through metaphors and syntheses, have sung to each of the universal themes”.

He added: “And, why not – they have spoken to us about local and regional issues and, needless to say, their own particular hardships, their failures and successes, their likes and dislikes, their doubts and certainties; all-in-all, about a personal and non-transferrable universe… the Campo de Gibraltar, which influences and determines so much, has seen their birth, growth, development, multiplication and ends among its dominions, and that is the mark of identity that joins them”.

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