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Carlos Bedoya

Carlos Bedoya

Carlos Bedoya

(Colombia, 1951)
Carlos Bedoya is a poet, essayist, translator and radio music programmer. He studied philosophy and literature, and already as a student published a literary review. He has written two books of poems and one of essays and his work has appeared in both Colombian and foreign periodicals.
Few poets are capable of believing, defending and taking on Rimbaud’s motto: “The poet must become a seer through a long, deep and reasoned disorder of all senses.” One of these poets is Bedoya, the frugal, quiet and solitary author of Little Queen of Spades. The latter which was published in the 198os is a strange book which broke with the poetry of local color that was being written in Medellín, the poet’s native city. Also remarkable is the visionary character of the short poems of this compulsive lover of jazz, rock, aleatoric music, night, eroticism, and the pleasure of thinking against the grain. Bedoya has written that he believes “…the senses, and specially their disorder, their disarray, are the key, the incentive of the flashing dimension, visible for many, but incommunicable for almost every one.”

In the contemporary Colombian poetry scene, Bedoya is almost alone in his will to express a quite singular interior universe, rich and disturbing glimpses of certain very deep zones of reality, with verbal accuracy and economy, such as we see in the poems of Víperas (Eves):

Monotony, spasms
half-light of the path
suffocating foam
fever of tedium
on the eve of vertigo.
Today we have cut again
the roots of the sky
that flowered
in our tree.

To surrender absolutely and wildly to poetry as to a last solitude, but also as the strongest reality of being, constitutes a destiny in itself. For Bedoya, the poem is the most singular of adventures; he sets off in the search of marvels and revelations which might only end up adding gravity to daily life and immediate reality:

God, do not ask me for patience.
Perhaps everything is already dead.
Well, I didn’t mean that.
You know, there is nothing to say.
But let us say it is impossible
not to resist oblivion
not to withstand death
not to pretend we don’t
know anything.

He is always on the edge of silence, at the limit of words, when poetry appears. In Bedoya’s poetry, the poetic text concentrates on a few images that condense experiences and sensations more than ideas. We witness his flight, his sommnanbulist dance on the white smoke of the page. There are no intellectual pretentions here, there is no explicit thought, nor the intention of communicating something, except himself, or, perhaps, yes, the dark reflection of a world already wearily predictable.
© Pedro Arturo Estrada (Translated by Nicolás Suescún)

Pequeña reina de espada
, Ediciones Unicornio, Medellín, 1985 
Vísperas del Vértigo, Poemas, Editorial Ojo Mágico, Medellín, 2004 
La escritura, Poemas de Aminur Rahman, Translation by the author, who published it in London, England, 2002 
Viajes en la cuerda floja (essays), Editorial Endymión, Medellin, 2006


Four poems in Spanish
Gemeente Rotterdam
Nederlands Letterenfonds
Stichting Van Beuningen Peterich-fonds
Ludo Pieters Gastschrijver Fonds
Lira fonds
LantarenVenster – Verhalenhuis Belvédère