Octavio Paz Essays

My Life with the Wave

Octavio Paz is Mexico’s greatest living poet. But let’s face it: that’s like saying William Carlos Williams was Paterson’s best writer. For Americans, a better way of indicating Paz’s importance will have to be found. Perhaps it would be more suggestive to say that in the universe of Latin American writing, Neruda’s poetry is solar: a lavish, Hispanic ful-mination–like a Tamayo watermelon–and Paz’s poetry lunar: a rarer, Gallic luminosity–like a Magritte moon–; or, to put it another way, to say…

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