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Additional Book Information

Series: NYRB Poets
ISBN: 9781590178744
Pages: 128
Publication Date: November 14, 2023

Maqroll's Prayer and Other Poems

by Álvaro Mutis, translated from the Spanish by Chris Andrews, Kristin Dykstra, Edith Grossman, and Alastair Reid

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Álvaro Mutis is celebrated internationally as the author of the seven novellas, written between 1986 and 1993, that constitute the legendary and widely loved Adventures and Misadventures of Maqroll. Maqroll, the Gaviero, or watchman, is a wanderer, always in pursuit of love and fortune, even as he knows that neither can or will last.

Few know, however, that Maqroll made his first appearance, and established his myth, not in prose but in poetry. Starting 1948, Mutis published several volumes of poetry influenced by surrealists like Robert Desnos and Pablo Neruda, but with an unmistakable voice of his own, gaining the admiration of Octavio Paz and Gabriel García Márquez, who called him “one of the greatest writers of our time.” Here a selection of Mutis’s haunting poems—invocations to a hidden god, private talismans of an outcast spirit—has been rendered into English by Chris Andrews, Kristin Dykstra, Edith Grossman, and Alastair Reid.