Carmen Camacho

Spain

Carmen Camacho (Alcaudete, Jaén, 1976), besides a poet, is an aphorist, a literary critic and a creative writing teacher. To this date, she has published the following titles: Arrojada(2007), 777 (2007), Minimás(2008, 2009 -2ndedition-), La mujer del tiempo (2011), Campo de fuerza(2008, reprinted 2018). Letra pequeña(2014), Vuelo doméstico(2014), and Zona franca(2016). Las versiones de Eva(2014) is a personal anthology of her own poetic work. She has also published Fuegos de palabras(Fundación José Manuel Lara, 2018), an anthology of the 19thand 20thcenturies poetic aphorisms in Spanish. 

 

As an anthologist she has edited Seré bre/ Aforismos poéticos y otras breverías(2015) and 10 poetas jóvenes desde Andalucía, published by UNAM (Universidad Autónoma de México) for the 2006 Guadalajara International Book Fair. 

 

In 2011 she was awarded the Premio Iberoamericano Fernando Quiñones. Her work has been translated into seven languages and included in the most relevant contemporary Spanish anthologies of poetry and aphorisms. 

 

She is a member of the editorial board of the poetry publication Nayagua (Fundación Centro de Poesía José Hierro) and of the Spanish aphorism annual directory published by Libros al Albur, Apeadero de Aforistas.

 

A specialist in International Information, she holds a degree in Journalism from Universidad Complutense de Madrid. Her weekly op-ed pieces appear in Diario de Sevillaand the rest of publications in Grupo Joly. She also writes for many other poetry, art and philosophy publications and magazines.

 

Due to her deep interest in the dialogue between poetry and the arts, she has designed scenic poetry shows, written dramatizations and carried out collaboration projects with photographers, painters, musicians and other artists. Toma de tierra, her latest work for the stage is the meeting of texts - written and performed by herself - and contemporary dance, cante jondoand other forms of stylized yell, in collaboration with dancer Raquel López Lobato and cantaorJuan Murube. In a 2015 collaboration with the rock band Pony Bravo, she wrote the dramatization of Alessandro Baricco’s Omero, Iliade, premiered at Itálica’s Roman theatre, Sevilla, in which she played Helen of Troy.  She is currently working on a spoken word show in collaboration with punk rock musician Dogo.

 

She has held poetry readings, lectures and workshops in festivals and institutions all over Spain and other European countries, such as Portugal, Greece, Italy, France, Ireland and Germany; Latin America, such as Mexico, Colombia, Ecuador, Bolivia and Puerto Rico; and the Arab world, such as Tunisia, Morocco and Algeria, and in Russia. 

 

She has been a coordinator, curator and consultant at several poetry and contemporary art venues, meetings and exhibitions. She has been a jury at both national and international awards. Currently she manages several groups of poetic creation. She lives in Sevilla, doing her thing. 


The poetry of Carmen Camacho is voice and word, both united in a constant dance. Every word in his writing must be said immediately, otherwise the full meaning that emerges from the depth and ends in a flight is not completed. Each of his poems always includes this game of heights, of abyssal depths and stratospheric lightness. Hence, many of its titles: "Force field", "Domestic flight", "Earthing", which continuously describe the duality between the subject and his aura, between matter and the immaterial, between gravity and lightness. And it seems then that what is written and described weighs more than the paper where it is printed, and yet its declamation it is completely detached from its physical quality and acquires the properties of the wind.

Her poetry goes through a range of sensations, all the edges of the idea, with a fickle physicality that is altered in an inversely proportional sense. This is: when the poem is gestated the idea is free and vaporous, it is a slight resentment, a small whisper. Then Carmen binds it firmly to its symbol, she endows it with valence until it becomes matter. Little by little, the idea acquires the weight of the experience that transits in the poem, adding layers of meaning, building a house of connected rooms and nesting in each of the rooms. And yet, in this process of "fortification", its verbal referent, which is what previously had the burden and weight, is fading and rising until both signifier and signified are in the air, levitating above our heads.

Carmen Camacho continuously repeats this process with such a level of efficiency in it that the dynamic has been transformed into a game, into fun, into an experiment. When she recites on a stage, she displays in the air a whole zoo of great ideas magnetized among them, from love to indifference, from illusion to death, from beliefs to detachment. A bestiary of absolutes that Camacho makes descend and rise like soap bubbles, tying them when she wants, releasing them when necessary.

It is not easy in poetry to acquire the ability to enjoy the terms, to change their weight and properties as Camacho does. To do this, she uses two accurate formulas: on the one hand, personal experience, which one would say is what makes everything "landing", the one that sews the word to the skin that embodies it and screams it. It is the personal experience that turns the verb into body, the one that gives it nails and eyes, the one that turns everything in red like her hair. The other one is humour. A humour that unravels what comes, an extraordinary laugh that uncovers the imbricated and resolves the complex. A humour that releases ballast with shovelfuls. A humour that is the passage of time, and acceptance, and pride and understanding. A humour that runs around the concept and frees it, making it graceful, light, ethereal. This is how in her poetry everything ends up naked, without a mask, without lead, without rope or sanity. Everything floats, everything levitates, but we can never forget that what is so weightless is also the solid rock that builds our soil.