Juan Garrido-Salgado was born in Chile and was a political prisoner under the Pinochet regime, but now lives in Adelaide. He has published three books of poetry and his poems had been published in Chile, Colombia, Spain, El Salvador, Brazil, Europe, New Zealand and Australia. He also translated into Spanish John Kinsella, Mike Ladd, Judith Beveridge, Dorothy Porter and including Talking to Neruda's Questions. He translated five Aboriginal poets for Espejo de Tierra/ Earth Mirror Poetry Anthology. Juan Garrido-Salgado, Steve Brock and Sergio Holas translated into English Trilingual Mapuche Poetry Anthology. He is currently working on the Spanish translation of a selection of Jumoke Verissimo's poems, to be read at the Granada International Poetry Festival.
Sonnet (Writers’ Week in Adelaide, 2006)
I am sitting in different shadows.
Chairs are the roots of trees,
the white tents a nest of words and creation.
I am listening to the sound and face of vowels.
Names and authors are beings of the image world.
Stories of lands, struggles, deaths,
beauty and ugliness an equal part of the journey.
Foreign sounds are rare birds under native trees.
A kookaburra sings to the wind and the heat of the evening.
Yahia Al-Samawy reads his poem in Arabic:
Leave my country.
The helmet of occupiers can never be a pigeon’s nest
I am listening to the rhythm of hearts next to a tree.
I am listening to Robert Fisk’s flesh,
Baghdad and Gaza his home,
ancient cities without rivers,
only dried dreams of the oppressors.
Revolution-Tango (An excerpt from a longer poem: Tango)
Please let me dance with you now
Before my dawn arrives here…
The night begins to cover your black dress,
I no longer see you:
Can’t feel your body.
Can’t find your hands
My eyes, two Mypie’sbirds in the corner of the room
With no wings, naked, lost,
they belong to a dream
Eyes dark with pain, dark with death and love.
I am lost alone, without you…
I am a citizen struggling for a Revolution.