The Thomas Merton Center at Bellarmine University

Citation of Books Detail

Click here to return to the main list

Author QuotedErnesto Cardenal
Title QuotedGethsemani, Ky
Date (Year/Month/Day)1959/09/12
Imprint[S.l.] : [s.n.]. 1960
QuotationYour poems about Gethsemani [Gethsemani, Ky.] are very effective and have a special meaning for anyone who knows the scene and the incidents. The simplest ones are the best"”for instance the little song "Hay un rumor de tractores "¦" and the other one about the smell of the earth in the spring in Nicaragua, and the ones that bring to mind contrasts and comparisons with Nicaragua. The one about the snow is very effective: perhaps it is the best "¦ I think you are right in saying that these are less good than the ones you wrote before coming here. Certainly they have less power. But they should be what they are, simple and quiet and direct. And with that charming Chinese brevity. On the other hand your poems in the Revista de la Literatura are splendid. They constitute some of the few really good political poems I have read"”they have the quality, and even more, that the left-wing poets had in the thirties. They are powerful and arresting and I am very happy with them. I wish I knew more about the background and the story. I think they are clearly your best poems.
Quotation SourceThe Courage for Truth: Letters of Thomas Merton to Writers.; Selected and edited by Christine M. Bochen. / New York : Farrar Straus Giroux. 1993, p. 114
Letter toErnesto Cardenal
Link to Merton's Copy  

(If there is a link above showing up as a number, click it to open another window with a full text version.)