Lecturer runner-up in prestigious poetry prize
A Palmerston North-based Spanish lecturer has won second prize in one of Latin America's most prestigious poetry competitions.
Dr Leonel Alvarado's book Retratos mal hablados was runner-up and received a special mention in the Casa de las Americas Poetry Award, which has been run from Cuba since 1960.
The Massey University lecturer's book was selected from 328 manuscripts by a panel of five judges who came from Cuba, Ecuador, Argentina, Puerto Rico and Uruguay.
The special mention has been awarded to highly regarded Latin American poets, and Dr Alvarado was told of the recognition by esteemed poet and critic Roberto Fernandez Retamar - director of Casa de las Americas.
Dr Alvarado has published six books of poetry, short stories and criticism in Latin America and the United States.
He said Retratos mal hablados was close to his heart as it was written in three places: his birthplace Honduras, New Zealand and the United States.
Dr Alvarado will travel to Cuba in June to take part in a poetry reading at Casa de las Americas and present at a conference at the Universidad de La Habana.