Fanaim (El Gato Tuerto, 1984), 28 pages, bilingual, chapbook, out of print. Translated by Chris Allen and the Author. Nine poems: "You," "For Albert, the Terrible," "Beauty is in the Eye of the Beholder," "Chip," "T'estimo molt, Noia," "Dolce Far Niente," "And the Rain," "Fanaim," and "In my Labyrinth (The Minotaur's Game)."

A review stated:

"Caulfield's poems deal with everyday life and her environment. They are filled with tenderness, freshness and immediacy."
— Alberto Jiménez Ure, El Universal, Caracas, October 26, 1986



Sometimes I Call Myself Childhood / A veces me llamo infancia (Solar, 1985, 26 pages, Translated by Chris Allen and the Author. Chapbook) Contains 12 thematically related poems in Spanish and English: "When I Return to My Childhood," "Eternal Childhood," "Amateratsu and Kawa-No-Kami," "Saturdays," "I Don't Forget," "Joy," "Again the Remembrances," "Merci Bien, Monsieur," "To John Dos Passos," "Steinbock," "With Wide Wings," and "We have to Dream."




 

 

El tiempo es una mujer que espera [Time is a Woman Who Waits] (Ediciones Torremozas, 1986, 70 pages, in Spanish, ISBN 84-86072-42-5) Preface by Juana Rosa Pita.The book is divided in three parts of 25,9 and 13 poems. Out of Print. For more information contact Ediciones Torremozas of Madrid: E-mail.

A review stated:

The lyricism of Caulfield's poetry comes from the intensity of the language, its rhythm and cadence, as well as the lucid language that illuminates the images. There is no doubt that this is the work of a poet of great maturity who also possesses an extraordinary esthetic sensibility. —(María Jesús Mayans Natal, Alba de América 10-11, 1988.)

 

34th Street and other poems (Eboli Poetry Series, 1987, 52 pages, ISBN 0-932-36708). Translated by Chris Allen and the Author. Preface by Jack Foley. Cover painting "Lines Drawn" by Eugenia Tusquets.The book is divided in two parts: I. The Moviola has a Crude Sound System and II. Through the Keyhole of Memories.

From Jack Foley's preface:

It is Carlota Caulfield's extraordinary ability to remain in that precise state -at once separated and connected, exiled and 'at home'- that gives her work its special poignancy and joy, its special power. The poems of 34th Street revolve with great richness around themes of memory, exile, love, childhood, dreams. Like Lewis Carroll's Alice, Carlota seems to have immediate access to another world, a world which she can enter 'through the keyhole of memories' or through 'dream.'


From "You All Know the Story of the Two Lovers":

Today Eurydice played
With the labyrinthine earth
And imagined herself
Bound to Orpheus' skin.
Imagined herself...
Somewhere inside him.
Today Orpheus played
With his hands
And imagined himself
Playing a drum
Somewhere inside
Eurydice's intermittent city.
From "For my Father"
You who lived walking over time.
Majestic of skin and of soul. You
Whom solitude made into a god.
I remember your ancestral darkness,
Dreaming dreams of what you never hoped for,
The roads without final prayers,
The accursed tranquillity which cut our wings.
I saw you die. It was that morning
When I begin to be nobody.

 

Oscuridad divina [Divine Darkness] (Betania, 1987, 72 pages, in Spanish, ISBN 84-86662-08-7).Introduction by Juana Rosa Pita. Book design by Gregory P. Collins. Cover painting "Le Double" by Leonor Fini. Received the Honorable Mention of the Fourth International Poetry Mairena Award of Puerto Rico, 1983. Seventy six poems, including a Glossary. This is a book about goddesses. The poems reconcile haiku with "greguería", aphorism with sentence, thus reaffirming roots that are clearly lyrical.

From the blurbs:

Oscuridad divina seems to try to recuperate the lost and forgotten past of a series of goddesses whose personalities encompass characteristics that are hidden and forbidden to the present-day woman. This book creates a new mythic reality based on opposing values, in which imagination, sex, passion, ambiguity, evil, love and freedom have a different dimension" —(Fuencisla Zomeño). "In Caulfield's works, it's important to note the carnal worship of language (...) It's necessary to recognize that the essential feature of her relationship with language is based on its diversity." —(Francisco Javier Satué).


Oscurità divina
(Giardini Editori e Stampatori in Pisa, 1990, 68 pages, in Italian). Prologo di Juana Rosa Pita. Traduzione di Rosella Livoli e Carlos Vitale. Cover by Vittorio Minghetti. For this collection of poems, Caulfield was awarded the International Prize "Ultimo Novecento", Poeti nel Mondo, in 1988.

 







 


Angel Dust/Polvo de Angel/Polvere D'Angelo (Betania, 1990, 64 pages). Trilingual edition: English/Spanish/Italian.Translated into English by Carol Maier. Translated into Italian by Pietro Civitareale. With three introductions by Maier, Miguel Angel Zapata and Civitareale. Book design after the Ink drawings of Master Sengai, Japan, 18th c. Cover painting "Imprisoned Bag" by Daniel Serra-Badué.

From the blurbs:

"Polvo de Angel is a book rich in poetic experimentation. The poetic voice becomes a Zen Master who transmits knowledge (to the reader) by way of enigmatic riddles" —(Miguel Angel Zapata). "Her poems are well-crafted, spoken with awareness" —(Renata Giambene). "Caulfield's poetry brings a physical dimension to language" —(Francisco Javier Satué).


"The Mind is Only a Crazy Monkey"
(Indian proverb)
Anders Gezelius
the thirteenth-century Swedish painter
titled one of his self-portraits
"My original face, before
my parents were born."
The artist's expression
is always beginning
to form on his canvas.
The painting is at each viewing
a new painting
and no one has ever seen
the same face twice.
I have just seen the work in Stockholm,
but in truth what I saw
was my face
within me
with my beginner's mind.
Gezelius is said to have been an angel.

 

Estrofas de papel, barro y tinta (Cafè Central, 1995, 8 poems, chapbook, in Spanish). To buy a copy of this beautiful chapbook write to the editor Antoni Clapés, Cafè Central, Apartat 36092, 08080 Barcelona, Spain.

 

 







A las puertas del papel con amoroso fuego (Torremozas, 1996, 64 pages, ISBN 84-7839-171-1). Introduction by Marjorie Agosín. This book received an Honorable Mention at the 1992 Premio Plural Poetry Award of Mexico City and the 1997 Latino Poetry Honorable Mention of the Institute of Latin American Writers of New York. You can order the book in Spanish from Ediciones Torremozas, Apartado 19.032, 28080 Madrid, Spain. Fax 34 91 345 85 32. E-mail.

From Agosín's introduction:

"These texts are beautiful, suggestive, terrifying and humorous. For example, the one devoted to the Countess Pardo Bazán in which Caulfield recreates the history of the inside gossip and suggestive secrets contained in love letters, as if they were magnets of memory. [...] Caulfield gives us an extraordinary and hallucinatory book, original and disturbing, which helps us to recreate our madness and love as extraordinary women of universal history, from countesses to dancers, from Incan princesses to nuns, because this poet knows that the true secret of love letters does not lie with the recipient, but with the writer. This is an exquisite and joyous collection, a classic work of 20th century poetry. Caulfield is a poet to read and remember: her love letters will forever be in the secret zones or in the open landscapes of the written word."


From a review:

"In this book, Caulfield gives us a precise poetic tone, the legacy of women's incarnations. She makes them speak in the present time, with exactitude, but always with burning desire."
—Alejandro González Acosta, unomásuno, México D.F., December 7, 1996.

From "The Interludes of the Countess":

I certainly do not want you to be unfaithful to me, no: but it is even harder to conceive of you taking a woman as an intellectual friend and telling her the plots of your novels.
—(Passage from a letter of Emilia Pardo Bazán to Benito Pérez Galdós)

Between 1889 and 1890
my pen has loved you
as no other.
I refuse to believe
that the rumors
which are circulating
are true.
It's impossible,
isn't it, my precious?

 

Book of the XXXIX Steps / Libro de los XXXIX escalones (Luz Bilingual Publishing, 1997, 44 pages, ISBN 0-963-4009-5-9) Translated by Angela McEwan. 1997 Luz en Arte y Literatura Translation Prize.

These poems are poetic commentaries on various paintings by the Spanish Surrealist Artist Remedios Varo. Other themes: Alchemy, Mysticism and Kabbala.

In the mirrors
ten spheres and ten sayings
speculate at their open book:
the eye's light springs from the pupil
of one perpetually surprised.
II
To remember
is to paint the world in reverse:
the king's laughter explodes
above the crown and evaporates it.
The road leads to Gerona.
III
The letters are mixed
with water, earth, wood,
stone, cane, stalks and iron:
while Beauty plays
I will reach the observatory.

 

At the Paper Gates with Burning Desire (Eboli Poetry, 2001, bilingual Spanish-English, 108 pages. ISBN 0-9711391-2-1)

Translated by Angela McEwan in collaboration with the author. Introduction by Marjorie Agosin.

This book received an Honorable Mention at the 1992 Premio Plural Poetry Award of Mexico City and the 1997 Latino Poetry Honorable Mention of the Institute of Latin American Writers of New York.

"Carlota Caulfield gives us an extraordinary and hallucinatory book, original and disturbing, which helps us to recreate our madness and love as extraordinary women of a universal history, from countesses to dancers, from Incan princesses to nuns, because this poet knows that the true secret of love letters does not lie with the recipient, but with the writer. This is an exquisite and joyous collection, a classic work of 20th century poetry. Caulfield is a poet to read and remember: her love letters will forever be in the secret zones or in the open landscapes of the written word."
—Marjorie Agosin, author of Women of Smoke.

"I read your incendiary women with immense pleasure, particularly enjoying the historical texturing of the material. My only regret was that I wanted more. I will read the collection one more time because I may want to respond with a poem of my own. You are inspiring me!"
—Cecile Pineda, author of Face.

"In At the Paper Gates with Burning Desire, Carlota Caulfield arranges a teasing collage of fragments of women's writing throughout history and from all over the world. Her sources are various, ranging from Sappho to Isadora Duncan, from a Virgin of the Sun to Rosa Luxemburg; letters are repositioned, faxes and e-mails recontextualized. But a common theme winds its sinuous way through these shards of emotion ripped from the past: the secret, playful language of love."
—Stephen Hart, author of White Ink: Essays on Modern Feminine Fiction in Spain and Latin America.

"In Caulfield's poetry, writing herself becomes rewriting the other(s). There are two poetic voices in this book: an intimate female voice, strongly confessional, and an intellectual, cosmopolitan voice, full of multicultural references and endless metamorphoses, both of which transform our reading into a feast for the senses as well as for the mind."
—Jesús J. Barquet, author of Escrituras poéticas de una nación: Dulce María Loynaz, Juana Rosa Pita y Carlota Caulfield.




Autorretrato en ojo ajeno (Betania, 2001, ISBN 84-8017-160-X, 72 pages).

Carlota Caulfield nos invita a la poesía en su elocuente Autorretrato. Furioso y esencial tríptico doble a la búsqueda de las esencias, reflexiones, seres. Poemario que nos atrae con voz en grito, sin escondrijos, decididamente, al gran ritual de la poesía de Carlota Caulfield, poeta sobretodo de una generación sin generaciones.

Y es que Caulfield se desnuda en su poesía sin miedos, sin irritaciones. Se deja derramar vocablo a vocablo con pasión de tinta sobre ese animal vivo de su poesía llameante. No hay paz, ni pausa, ni sosiego. Caulfield se abre en sensaciones "juego abierto" y en emociones que no son narrativas "no quiero contar historias" sino textuales en olores fuertes "conjunción de azahares", colores "Con el color de tus ojos / El amanecer me ha sorprendido", y sonidos "Toco mi filarmónica y digo: / Date ahora, mujer testaruda". Así lo afirma su espléndido "La furia de los olores":

Sándalo en la memoria muerta del sándalo
entre tu sed y mi sed (no hay)
mirra, pachulí y gálbano.
Perfumar, Sahumar, Aromar.

Qué invitación a la poesía sensorial de Carlota Caulfield, la poeta de las diosas ocultas reencarnadas en la mujer de hoy (Oscuridad divina), la poeta de los olores y los sabores "Recetas y consejos para atraer sueños placenteros", la poeta de los exilios y los viandantes (34th Street and other poems). Celebremos con ella en esta nueva copa.
Fernando Operé, University of Virginia.

 

Movimientos metálicos para juguetes abandonados (Primer Premio hispanoamericano de poesía "Dulce María Loynaz", 2002). Ed. Gobierno de Canarias / Consejería de Educación, Cultura y Deportes, La Laguna-Tenerife, Islas Canarias, 2003. ISBN 84-7947-345-2. 47 páginas.

"La Consejería de Educación, Cultura y Deportes del Gobierno de Canarias acaba de publicar un libro sorprendente ya desde su título mismo: Movimientos metálicos para juguetes abandonados, de la poeta cubana de origen irlandés Carlota Caulfield. Y no deja de ser curioso que haya aparecido en estas islas puente entre Europa y América, tratándose como se trata su autora de una poeta viajera, enlace ella misma de culturas de varios mundos, verdadera creadora de intertextos, de relaciones entre artes, literaturas y lenguas. En un libro anterior, Quincunce, Caulfield rendía culto a esa imagen de lo múltiple que se reúne en un centro, valiéndose de la metáfora de los cinco puntos del cuadrado, donde llevaba a cabo una intensa actualización de vivencias propias y ajenas convergentes en el corazón mismo de la búsqueda lingüística."

"Ahora Movimiento metálicos, premio Dulce María Loynaz, galardonado por un jurado entre cuyos miembros se encontraban Nancy Morejón (poeta cubana), Antonio Piedra (especialista en F. Pino), Eugenio Padorno (poeta canario) y Ramón Trujillo (lexicólogo), dando un paso más, se convierte en una cartografía poética que reúne las principales líneas escriturarias de Caulfield: pasión por el viaje y el viajero, en primer lugar, poética de las ciudades, culto a las artes, exaltación de la memoria, búsqueda de una mística, recreación de distintos paisajes (externos o internos) y sobre todo esa inmensa 'actualización' de tiempos y espacios, que viene a ser una de sus más propias 'actitudes' y 'aptitudes'."
—Jaime D. Parra, Barcelona.

 

The Book of Giulio Camillo / El Libro de Giulio Camillo / Il Libro di Giulio Camillo. Poetry. An Imprint of InteliBooks Publishers, 2003. 108 pages. ISBN 0-9711391.

"The Book of Giulio Camillo is a sequence of haunting incantatory poems by Carlota Caulfield, beautifully translated by Mary G. Berg. Writing about loss and memory and the redemption that comes of confronting the wound, Caulfield summons up the inner life in the dream music of theinexpressible."
—Chana Bloch, author of The Past Keeps Changing

In Classical times, Memory (Mnemosyne) was fabled to be the mother of the Muses. Frances A. Yates' The Art of Memory traces the Platonic sources of Giulio Camillo's 16th-century Theater of Memory in which "memory is not...one part of the art of rhetoric; memory...is the groundwork of the whole." In these haunting, enigmatic, impeccably modern poems--the Seven Pillars not of Wisdom but of Memory--Memory functions as the key to Carlota Caulfield's complex subjectivity. These three-lined, haiku-like poems resemble the frames of a film we do not quite remember but cannot forget. They usher us into a primal world in which "THE MIND'S TRACE / is defined in seeds filled with water;" in which

AIR, FIRE AND WATER
are round creatures,
a triad that can be anything.

What Yates writes of Giordano Bruno is true here as well: El Libro de Giulio Camillo, like memory itself, is "a most profound discipline...an 'inner writing' of mysterious significance."

—Jack Foley, author of O Powerful Western Star, Poetry & Art in California


Carlota Caulfield's project of reclamation of neglected, and sometimes not so neglected lives continues in her El Libro de Giulio Camillo / The Book of Giulio Camillo / Il Libro di Giulio Camillo. As her "Note in Homage" informs us, Camillo was one of the most famous men of the Italian Renaissance, renowned for the invention of a "theatre of memory" into which a single spectator would insert his head, to be presented with a view from the stage, as it were, of seven rows of spectators'seats. "It included,"

Caulfield's note continues, "all branches of knowledge and a method to memorize them as the 'full wisdom of the universe' was presented in 'seven times seven doorways.'" This strange and haunting apparatus, sounding to us like a cross between a virtual reality headset and an image out of de Chirico, is translated into the medium of verse by Caulfield's sevenfold sections of seven tercets which enact, rather than describe, Camillo's theatre. In limpid and piercing verses, Caulfield (superbly served here by her translators, Mary G. Berg and Pietro Civitareale) moves her narrating voice - detached in the manner of Beckett or Borges - from an initial state of dessicated receptivity through the several senses and elements as defined by Renaissance cosmology. As ever in Caulfield's work there is an insistence upon the body both as physical presence and as a mode of knowledge.

It is marvelous, yet not an easy work, compelling the reader as it does to confront the theatre of his or her own memories, to "meditate with pure water from mouth to ear" until the memory of some other falls "like warm paper onto warm paper," briefly escaping the prison of the self, of subjectivity, "and so the poem is written."

—John Goodby, author of Irish Poetry Since 1950. From Stillness into History

 

A Mapmaker’s Diary. Selected Poems. Bilingual edition. Buffalo, New York: White Pine Press, 2007. ISBN 978-1-893996-88-5.

A Mapmaker’s Diary gathers a selection of poems from both published and unpublished work in a bilingual format by this verbal acrobat, juggler of words, and magician of memory.
From the editor’s note:

The poetry of Carlota Caulfield is characterized by journeys, by a wandering memory that seeks to travel all the world’s roads, to sail to all its islands. The speakers in her poems are voyagers in perpetual transit, symbols of that wandering creature that human beings inevitably turn into when they are exiles from paradise, that is to say, from their mother’s womb. The poet’s eye yearns to see everything, take possession of everything, with never a pause to draw a breath. An eye that perceives all, including the fleeting passage of time and space.

—Isaac Goldemberg, author of Peruvian blues

Carlota Caulfield has given us a work of great sensuality and rare luminosity, suffused with an intelligence that is both playful and meditative. Her pleasures and discoveries become ours; her tender, often sly observations are crafted for inheritance. But it is Caulfield’s devotion to the daily sacred that helps inspire our own.

—Cristina García, author of Dreaming in Cuban

As they invent places and draw boundaries, Caulfield’s texts splice together a single imaginary map of over layered external and internal worlds. Restoring past phases of existence as she seeks herself, her poems can be cultural transmissions of profound resonance. On center stage is the multicultural space of the journey, location not only of encounters and epiphanies, but also of dramatic recollections of experiences of solitude and uprootedness, the emblematic site of the poet’s efforts, exile and wanderings.

The creation of herself, which in Caulfield’s poetics is also defined as the singular adventure of self-portraiture in another’s eye, allows her not only to inhabit other gazes, and from these new perspectives to constitute herself through the other’s view, but to reach out to intrinsic otherness, with unsuspected aesthetic and existential implications. Carlota Caulfield’s poems are transpersonal and transcultural self-creation. The author interprets variations of the return to herself, recounting how her gaze is also present in the eyes of alterity. At the same time, and recurrently, she assumes the perspective of movement, of literal and symbolic —that is, figural— journeys.

Memory makes these poems into gardens of forking paths, cracks of light that contain the figure of the author, surprised in the act of writing as she inscribes and translates her signs into the book of memory, now also a book that takes on a literal body in the world of life. Eye and word engage in an intense relationship. A result of this interaction is a metaphoric pronouncement of the writing that celebrates the creative power of the gaze and the word, and above all explores language. Because the visual eye is also the analytical eye that configures a vision into language, both the eye and the word indistinguishably constitute object and subject under permanent scrutiny. More than assertive, they are disruptive embodiments of the semiotic order in the symbolic. They open writing to meanings in whose center is found the fabulist nature of the poet registering the fluctuating forms of her dynamic self. Her world is conjectural, one of memory games in shifting art and of permutations. Caulfield’s texts operate by association and transformation, and model a reading that occurs in a zone of contacts, shifting sands and exchanges. Thus, we as readers can only reconfigure ourselves in transit.

—Aimée G. Bolaños, author of Una lectura de poetas de la diáspora cubana

(Fragments from “Carlota Caulfield, Poet in Transit” in A Mapmaker’s Diary. Selected Poems, 15-17)