Pablo Neruda

(4196 words)
  • Dominic Paul Moran (Oxford University)

Pablo Neruda (real name Ricardo Eliecer Neftalí Reyes Basoalto) is Latin America's best known and, for many, greatest poet. He is also one of its most controversial. He was born in 1904 in the central Chilean town of Parral, but brought up in what was then the far-flung outpost of Temuco, deep in the southern hinterland. The dense forests, volcanoes and vast lakes which surrounded the town, as well as the desolate, storm-racked Pacific coastline which lay to the west, would leave an indelible imprint on his verse, eventually making Neruda one of the greatest nature poets in Spanish. Indeed, as a poet of the sea he can have few rivals in any language.

He started to write poetry from a very early age (his earliest published …

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Moran, Dominic Paul. "Pablo Neruda". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 28 September 2009
[, accessed 26 September 2016.]