New Book: María Arrillaga’s “Ciudades como mares”


Ciudades como mares: Poesía 1966-1993 (Editorial Isla Negra, San Juan, 2012) by Puerto Rican writer and educator María Arrillaga, is a revised compilation of seven previously published books. It includes previously omitted material such as prologues, commentaries and controversies [. . .].

María Arrillaga is a poet, novelist, essayist and literary critic. She was born and raised in Mayagüez, Puerto Rico. Her prize-winning work spans over thirty years and has appeared in numerous publications and anthologies in Puerto Rico and abroad. Her novel, Mañana Valentina, was finalist in the literary contest sponsored by the Institute of Latin American Writers, New York, 1996. The author was also president of PEN Puerto Rican Center from 1989 to 1991.

Arrillaga is also the author of New York in the Sixties (1966-1969), Vida en el tiempo, Cascada de sol, Poemas siete cuatro siete, Yo soy Filí Melé, El amor es un periódico de ayer, and Flamingos en San Juan/Flamingos in Manhattan. She divides her time between New York and Old San Juan, Puerto Rico and is currently at work on a book of memoirs The Guava Orchard.

Writer Daniel Torres recently reviewed Ciudades como mares [Cities Like Seas], shedding light onto her trajectory as a writer and creative writing professor, as well as the various explorations linking her entire corpus so far. Torres writes: “To return to her poetry so many years later, to celebrate the publication of Ciudades como mares, her most recent works and corpus of poems, is to simultaneously be rooted in the homeland and in the journey. The verses in this latest release, undertake the roundtrip journey between island spaces, back and forth from Manhattan to San Juan, as they did in Flamingos in San Juan / Flamingos in Manhattan, her recent production. [. . .] This view of freedom traverses the entire anthology. [. . .]

See full review at


2 thoughts on “New Book: María Arrillaga’s “Ciudades como mares”

    1. Maria…my friend, my co-worker at the Department of Education. As for me I write for children in the Basic Readers. Maria is very enthuse with my first novel La santa puta . ready to be published. Maria…simply Maria is one of the best writers I’ve ever read and know.

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