Exhuming Vallejo, Or: The Third Way

I have an essay in this month’s issue of Poetry that begins like this:

“I first read César Vallejo in college, when a Peruvian friend presented me with several of his poems as if they were national treasures she had smuggled through customs. I was struck most forcefully by a strange sonnet called “Piedra negra sobre una piedra blanca,” and though I knew none of the existing translations, I was minoring in Spanish and could read the original well enough.”

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