Thursday, September 24, 2009

THe celebration continues...

My Name is Gabriela/Me llamo Gabriela (Bilingual): The Life of Gabriela Mistral/la vida de Gabriela Mistral
Here at My World/Mi Mundo we keep on celebrating Hispanic Heritage Month with books recommendations. Since it is Poetry Friday, I thought I will share this fantastic book about Gabriela Mistral, our first Latina Nobel Prize winner in 1945. This book titled My Name is Gabriella/Me Llamo Gabriella by Monica Brown talks about the love and passion that Gabriela had for words. This book is written in first person and describes Gabriela since her early years as a school child when she decides to change her name and teach herself how to read. Gabriela Mistral is actually the pseudonym for Lucila Godoy y Alcayaga. Then the book takes us when Gabriela becomes a school teacher. She was a very active woman in education in Mexico and Chile. Monica Brown captivated Gabriela's passion for expression and words really well through this book. As a teacher and as poet Gabriela encouraged children around the world to express themselves through writing and mostly, to follow our dreams. This book is the second book in the Luna Rising's bilingual biography series.

Gabriela Mistral is definitely one of our biggest pride in the South American Literature World. I want to celebrate Gabriela in our Poetry Friday and encourage anyone who wants to find out more about the life of this amazing woman to keep on reading. Trust me, she is an interesting person to discover. Here are a couple of interesting facts about Gabriela Mistral:

* Gabriela was born in Chile. Both of her parents came from Basque and Indian heritage.
*Her father, who was also a teacher, abandoned them when she was 3 years old. But before he left, he made a garden especially for Gabriela.
* At age 16, Gabriela started working as a teacher's aide so she could support herself.
* One sad event in Gabriela's life are reflected in some of her earlier poems like the suicide of her boyfriend in 1909. Most of her first poems are written to him. Gabriela's writing helped her cope with the sadness in her heart.
*Gabriela Mistral was the principal of an important school for girls in Chile.

These are just some basic facts about her. There are so many interesting stories to discover about Gabriela. During Hispanic Heritage Month, I wanted to make sure she has a page in My World/Mi Mundo.

"What the soul is to the body, so is the artist to his people." Gabriela Mistral

The Sad Mother
By Gabriela Mistral

Sleep, sleep my beloved
without worry, without fear
although my soul does not sleep
although I do not rest.

Sleep, sleep and in the night,
may your whispers be softer
than a leaf of grass
or the silken fleece of lambs.

May my flesh slumber in you,
my worry, my trembling
In you, may my eyes close
and my heart sleep.

Love Poetry Friday! Please stop by Susan Writes where Poetry Fridays round up will be! Have an excellent weekend!


jama said...

I'm so glad you featured Gabriela today! I'm keen on expanding my awareness of Latina/Hispanic writers. Thank you!

Mary Lee said...

Fascinating poet! Thanks for continuing our education!

laurasalas said...

Lovely poem. Thanks for sharing it, Stella. I especially love:

may your whispers be softer than a leaf of grass