Gabriel Chavez Casazola: Nothing left to discover

(Translated from Spanish by M.J. Fievre)

not the length and breadth of this land, no
cape, no bay, no peninsula, no isthmus,
no volcanoes—erupting or dormant
no sea, no ocean,
not even the underwater currents or
one last strange island
all
points of geography and all geographies
have
lost
their mystery.

They have been
named
-and here lies the problem-
and now that nothing is left unnamed, there are
no heroes, discoverers, pioneers, no avant-gardists,
not even
adventure travelers.

Only
books
are left
and the
remote and always tantalizing
possibility of a ferry escape.

***

A poet and journalist, Gabriel Chavez Casazola (Bolivia, 1972) is considered “an essential voice of the modern Bolivian and Latin American poetry.” He published several books of poetry in his birth country, including Lugar Común / Common Place (1999), Escalera de Mano / Stepladder (2003), El agua iluminada / Illuminated Water (2010), and La mañana se llenará de jardineros / The Morning will Bring out the Gardeners (2013 in Ecuador; Second Edition in Bolivia, 2014). His work has been anthologized in different countries: Camara de Niebla / Cloud Chamber (El Suri Porfiado, Argentina, 2014), El pie de Eurídice / the Foot of Eurydice (Gamar, Colombia, 2014) and La canción de la sopa / The Soup Song (Ecuador,2014).

Gabriel 2013 a

Part of his work is translated into Italian, Portuguese, English, Greek and Romanian. His poems appears in numerous anthologies and he has read his poetry in various countries. He teaches poetry workshops; he’s a columnist for different Bolivian newspapers and a regular contributor to various international poetry journals. He has also published books  in other genres, including  Historia de la cultura boliviana del siglo XX / A History of 20th Century Bolivian Culture, which received the Best Book Edited in Bolivia Award, in 2009. Gabriel also received the Medal of the Cultural Merit of the Bolivian State. In 2013 he was a finalist for the Premio Mundial de Poesía Mística Fernando Rielo.

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