Mexican poet, essayist, and political thinker. His works reflect many influences, including Marxism, surrealism, and Aztec mythology. El laberinto de la soledad/The Labyrinth of Solitude (1950), the book which brought him to world attention, explores Mexico's heritage. His long poem Piedra del sol/Sun Stone (1957) uses contrasting images, centring on the Aztec Calendar Stone (representing the Aztec universe), to symbolize the loneliness of individuals and their search for union with others. He was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1990.
In 1962 Paz was appointed Mexican ambassador to India, but resigned in 1968 in protest against the Mexican government's killing of 200 ... more »
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Octavio Paz Poems
No More Clichés
Beautiful face That like a daisy opens its petals to the sun So do you Open your face to me as I turn the page.
Between Going And Coming
Between going and staying the day wavers, in love with its own transparency. The circular afternoon is now a bay
As One Listens To The Rain
Listen to me as one listens to the rain, not attentive, not distracted, light footsteps, thin drizzle,
Your hair is lost in the forest, your feet touching mine. Asleep you are bigger than the night, but your dream fits within this room.
I turn the page of the day, writing what I'm told by the motion of your eyelashes.
Through the conduits of blood my body in your body spring of night my tongue of sun in your forest
I am a man: little do I last and the night is enormous. But I look up:
Here is a long and silent street. I walk in blackness and I stumble and fall and rise, and I walk blind, my feet
My hands Open the curtains of your being Clothe you in a further nudity Uncover the bodies of your body
Between now and now, between I am and you are, the word bridge.
Where Without Whom
There is not A single soul among the trees And I Don't know where I've gone.
In my body you search the mountain for the sun buried in its forest.
More than air More than water More than lips Light light
Space No center, no above, no below Ceaselessly devouring and engendering itself Whirlpool space
Quotationsmore quotations »
''"Art" is an invention of aesthetics, which in turn is an invention of philosophers.... What we call art is a game.''Octavio Paz (b. 1914), Mexican poet. "André Breton or the Quest of the Beginning," Alternating Current (1967).
''Man does not speak because he thinks; he thinks because he speaks. Or rather, speaking is no different than thinking: to speak is to think.''Octavio Paz (b. 1914), Mexican poet. "André Breton or the Quest of the Beginning," Alternating Current (1967).
If we are a metaphor of the universe, the human couple is the metaphor par excellence, the point of intersection of all forces and the seed of all forms. The couple is time recaptured, the return to t...Octavio Paz (b. 1914), Mexican poet. "André Breton or the Quest of the Beginning," Alternating Current (1967).
''Social criticism begins with grammar and the re-establishing of meanings.''Octavio Paz (b. 1914), Mexican poet. "Development and Other Mirages," The Other Mexico: Critique of the Pyramid (1972).
''What distinguishes modern art from the art of other ages is criticism.''Octavio Paz (b. 1914), Mexican poet. "Invention, Underdevelopment, Modernity," Alternating Current (1967).
No More Clichés
That like a daisy opens its petals to the sun
So do you
Open your face to me as I turn the page.
Any man would be under your spell,
Oh, beauty of a magazine.
How many poems have been written to you?
How many Dantes have written to you, Beatrice?
To your obsessive illusion
To you manufacture fantasy.
But today I won't make one more Cliché
And write this poem to you.
No, no more clichés.
This poem is dedicated to those women
Whose beauty is in their charm,
In their intelligence,
In their ...