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  • Submitted by: lena campos
  • 06 / 15 / 2013

The Amanuense publishing house launched the illustrated edition of the poem "La Niña de Guatemala" (The Guatemalan Girl) one of the most well-known poems of Jose Marti (1853-1895), the Cuban national hero.

"A Latin American like Jose Marti is so present today that he inspired us to publish this edition", said the director of the publishing house, Rodolfo Bolaños, in the book launch at Trovajazz cultural center, which celebrates its 11th anniversary.

Bolaños said that the book includes a portrait of Marti painted by Cuban Jose Luis Fariñas and illustrations of young Mexican Paulina Barraza.

During the ceremony Ronny Hernandez sang the melodious version of the famous poem.

Cuban singer Adrian Berazain moved the audience with songs like "El club de los corazones rotos" (The club of Broken Hearts), "Se enamora" (She Falls in Love), "Pobre corazon" (Poor heart) and "Por encima de lo conocido" (Above what is known), this last one dedicated to Jose Marti.

"Despite many of his poems are famous (...) none of them has such an outstanding place like "La Niña de Guatemala", said the Guatemalan writer Carmen Matute in the text included in the book. ..."We also find melancholy as a permanent basis of the poem, where the refrain la que murio de amor (the one who died of love), reinforces the idea of highest sacrifice", said Matute.

Valia Libenson, publishing director, said to Prensa Latina news agency that the idea of the book came when she and her husband (Bolaños) visited Cuba last January.

"We were moved by what the Cuban television broadcast about the 160th birth anniversary of Jose Marti and we agreed on publishing an edition dedicated to this poem", she said.

During his stay in Guatemala, between 1877 and 1878, Marti gave classes to Maria Garcia Granados, daughter of the former president Miguel Garcia Granados who used to play chess with Marti.

Even any moderately informed person when is asked about the relation between Marti and Guatemala, commonly mentions "the one who died of love", as Marti called Maria in his IX poem of his "Versos Sencillos" (Simple Verses), (New York, 1981).
Source: Prensa Latina

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