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Federico Garcia Lorca

3 Pages 657 Words

The Artists: Federico GARCIA LORCA (1898 - 1936) "LAMENT FOR IGNACIO SANCHEZ MEJIAS" In 1927, Lorca and his friends (Bergamin, Alberti, Guillen...) were invited to Seville to commemorate the 300th anniversary of the death of the poet, Gongora. They were guests at the estate of Ignacio Sanchez Mejias, who had just retired from the bullring and who hosted them lavishly. Lorca --painter, musician and poet -- and his host, Sanchez Mejias -- famous bullfighter, writer, passionate lover of literature and music -- were destined to become friends. Ignacio had a close relationship with Encarnacion Lopez Julvez, the famous dancer and singer who was known as "Argentinita" (this poem is dedicated to her) and it was she who really sealed the friendship between the two men. Two years later, they would be seen together often, in New York, and on their return to Spain, Lorca would arrange popular songs for "La Argentinita". In 1934, perhaps for material reasons, perhaps to recapture the emotions of victory and of facing death, Sanchez Mejias, at the age of forty-three, returned to the bullring. He had to lose fifteen kilos in order to put on his "suit of lights". With just three more engagements as the Toreador-Poet, he had decided to quit the ring, once and for all. But the shadow of fate hovered over him. The wounded Domingo Ortega asked him to replace him at Manzanares on August 11th. Because of pride, Ignacio reluctantly agreed. At the beginning of the corrida, he was gored in the thigh. Lorca was in Santander. Alberti was travelling. Bergamin was present at the corrida and stayed by the wounded toreador's bedside. Ignacio was moved to Madrid, where he died on the morning of August 13th. Lorca was shattered by the news and, in September, wrote the poem. It was published in November of the same year. "There is nothing in the Spanish language more beautiful than this poem." To such praise, Lorca replied : "It is not the equal of four small verses su...

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