Gabriela Mistral The Poet and Her Work by M Arce De Vazquez

“I bloom within myself,
— Gabriela Mistral, from Selected Prose & Prose Poems; “The Fig,”
The womenpioneers, Gabriela Mistral, the first Latin American author/poet to receive the Nobel Prize in Literature “for her lyric poetry which, inspired by powerful emotions, has made her name a symbol of the idealistic aspirations of the entire Latin American world” 1945. Her poems are mainly portrayed womanhood, children, education, religion, life, love, despair, beauty, nature and the world. They are the reflection of her own life, the catastrophe, the wound, perseverance and determination. It is deeply emotional, devastated yet beautifully and powerfully composed.
When I discovered Gabriela Mistral for the first time, I was deeply moved and inspired by her poems and her stories. The biggest motivation I could fully connect and relate to her was the same kind of childhood difficulty. Her view of life, feelings, nature and the world touched the core of my soul.
Gabriela Mistral is a literary pseudonym of Lucila Godoy Alcayaga. She was a Chilean poet, diplomat, educator and humanist. Born in the middle of the mountains in rural Chile, her father abandoned her and the family before she turned three. She was raised by her mother and sister. She was dismissed from school from taken the school supply. Poverty left huge scars on her childhood life. By then her sister, who was a teacher, homeschool her. She learned how to read by reading the Bible with her grandmother. At her teenage years, she started to write, earned some small money, was able to stand on her own feet and supported the family.
With perserverance made her life extrodinary. She became a teacher then moved to rural area to teach underrepresented children. She moved to oversea at her 30s. First was invited by the Mexican governemt to work on education consulting. Later the Chilean goverment appointed her as a consul for life with the right to choose her own residence. She worked as a diplomat in Naples, Madrid, Lisbon, Nice, Petrópolis, Los Angeles, Santa Barbara, Veracruz, Rapallo, and New York City. She’d traveled and lived in Italy, Spain, Portugal, France, almost every countries in Latin America like Brazil, Perto Rico, Cuba and Uruguay. Apart from sharing the bitterness of adolescence, I could strongly relate to her eventful life living and traveling around the world.
She also wrote for many papers across Latin America and was invited to teach and honored the doctorate degrees from many prestiges universities from many countries in American continent, north and south, including many from the US. She’s also served in the UN Committee for the Women’s Rights.
There are so many details in Gabriela Mistral’s biography that mesmerised me. I would surely take my entire reading life time to study about her. The more I learned about her, the more I love her and the meaning of her poetry. Always a strong woman, always lending hands regardless of adversity and hardship. And her powerful perserverance.
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