Honor society hosts poet and launches literary journal

Queens, helped St. John’s National Spanish Honor Society launch the thirteenth issue of “Entre Rascacielos,” the society’s literary journal, on October 9, in Bent Hall.

Edited by Dr. Marie-Lise Gazarian and Monica Sanchez, “Entre Rascacielos”, which translates to “Between Skyscrapers,” contains selections of poetry and short narratives submitted by students, professors, and guest authors invited by the society to contribute their literature.
The brief ceremony, done completely in Spanish, highlighted the accomplishments of the Sigma Delta Pi chapter of the National Spanish Honor Society, and included an interview with Marzán, conducted by Dr. Gazarian.

Marzán, a Puerto-Rican American raised in the Bronx, explained how he creates poetry, and how he finds inspiration. His work has been published in various magazines and newspapers, both nationally and internationally, and can be found both in English and in Spanish. When asked how he feels when people ask him about the meaning of his poetry, he responded that he tells people to “just shut up and read it.”

Marzán explained how he felt that the biggest difference between poetry in English and Spanish was the tone and musicality that the words take on, depending on the language. To demonstrate, he read his poem “The Glue Trap,” which is written in English, explaining that the same effect of the poem could not be achieved if he had written it in Spanish.

After the interview, students and faculty who had contributed to the publication read selected poems that were included in the book. Adjunct professor Irma Romero read her poem “Mi tierra azteca,” meaning “My Aztec land,” about the cruelties inflicted upon them by the Spanish.

Three students also read their pieces that had been published in the journal. Theodore Lemle read his poem “¡Que ricos son los ticos!,” which celebrated his pride of his Costa Rican ancestry. Dawn DeLeonardis, who graduated from the Masters of Arts program this past spring ,read from her poem “Pura vida,” which spoke of the beauty in life and nature. Alex Lima also read his piece entitled “Preludio invernal,” a poem comparing his love with the accumulation of snow.

Senior Carolina Aguasanta, treasurer of St. John’s Sigma Delta Pi chapter of the society, helped plan the event and also helped run the program. “As well as being a member of the organization, I represent a member of the student body interested in expanding my knowledge of Spanish literature, particularly in poetry,” she noted. She also mentioned how she was happy with the turnout, but wants the rest of the community to come next semester to their spring event.

Also in attendance was adjunct professor Maria Santos. “I really liked the program,” she said. Like Aguasanta, she also felt that the event was “very important for the community”, and would like to see more people come to their next event.