In Latin America, poets are a source of great national pride and poetry is infused in every day life — and there’s something really magical about that. This trip was all about Ruben Dario, the Nicaraguan father of the Modernist movement. We stayed at the Hotel Dario, which happily delivers Dario’s works to your door for free when you dial the front desk. Bookshelves in bars and restaurants carry his major works, like Azul and Cantos de vida y esperanza (alongside Spanish-language Harry Potter paperbacks). Natives wear shirts with his name and silhouette, tourist-trap outdoor markets sell souvenirs commemorizing him and, almost everyday, his name comes up during casual conversation.
The Chileans have Pablo Neruda and Cuba has Jose Marti.
This got us thinking about American poets and poetry and that, perhaps, Walt Whitman is our most “national” poet. Of course, this is up for debate and we’d love to hear if you think otherwise.
In an effort to bring poetry back into our everyday, we’ve decided to gift each other Leaves of Grass for the holidays. Thanks Nicaragua, for inspiring us.
Posted by: Mariela