Trade Paper – $16.95

ISBN 978-1-880684-63-4
Publication Date
October 1999
Page Count
104 pages
Trim Size
5.5 x 8.5


Claribel Alegria

In Sorrow, Claribel Alegria plumbs the depths of grief and wrests hope from pain and memory in lyrics written as love letters to her deceased husband. The poems not only summon their shared past in vivid detail, but also ponder the meaning of death and separation, and the yearning for eventual reunion.
About the Author

Claribel Alegría was a Salvadorian-Nicaraguan poet, essayist, novelist, and journalist who was a major voice in the literature of contemporary Central America. She has been called "one of the region's finest writers" by The Washington Post. Alegría published over forty books, including fifteen collections of poetry, and was a recipient of the Casa de las Americas Prize of Cuba. Her works in English include Ashes of Izalco, Luisa in Realityland, and Family Album. She was awarded the 2006 Neustadt International Prize for Literature. She died in 2018.

Carolyn Forché is an American poet, editor, translator, and activist. She is currently a professor at Georgetown University, and is a co-Chair, with Gloria Steinem, of the Creative Advisory Council of Hedgebrook, a residency for female authors. She lives in Maryland. 


"This is a book of wounded song, an elegiac account of a lover's grieving for the death of her beloved. Sensitively rendered into English...Sorrow distills powerful feeling, giving new life to one of poetry's oldest, most essential themes." —San Francisco Chronicle

"At a time when critics seem embarrassed by writing that displays any feeling, when technology increasingly seems to be the model for the body and brain, it is oddly comforting to read a book that devotes itself to understanding and experiencing the nuances of emotion." — Rain Taxi


"Alegría invokes the ancient gods and lovers time and again, and these simple lyrics of solitude and sorrow, with their haiku-like brevity, at their best achieve the purity and clarity of classical verse." —Kirkus Reviews

"...terse, exquisite, excruciating lyrics." —The Boston Sunday Globe

"...employing the Greek Myths, Alegría explores that twilight land between the living and the dead." — Culture Watch

"A deeply moving collection of poems..." — Hartford Advocate