Marcela Thome

When the Poetry Arises in Other Languages

By on July 16, 2013 . Category Book Genres

Marcela Thomé is a 25-years-old Brazilian poet who is guiding her artistry through several ways and languages. Many characters of romance and poetry writing inspired her work on plastic art. Marcela exposed it for the very first time in January 2013 in “Casa do Xiclet” gallery, in downtown São Paulo. She was a student of psychology for three years, but gave it up in order to study letter, focusing on the German language. She listens to Bob Dylan and is currently reading the book “Aurelia,” written by Nerval. She also loves William Blake, Patti Smith, Aurives Fontela, Emily Dickinson and Hilda Hilst. Read more about how these authors have influenced her poetry writing in the interview below.

Marcela III

WIDBOOK – You have written your poetry in Portuguese and English. What’s the difference in the creative process?

MARCELA THOMÉ – Writing in different languages, for me, is like having two different pseudonyms. When I write my poems in Portuguese, the play with words is more connected to my roots and culture. In a way, it is harder than writing in English, since I’m more aware of the structure of the language as well as the culture references. When I write in English, I guess I am more distant to the object so I can make my poetic decisions with a more rational mind. I tend to write more connected to the sound, because the meanings aren’t that clear to me. It can be more playful and intriguing, because I never actually now how my English poems are going to end up. In general, I think it’s two completely different poetics. One being more engaged to the work of poetry and the other more like a tool to develop poetic styles.

WIDBOOK – Do you have any preference in regards to the style of the poetry you write?

MARCELA THOMÉ – I definitely write more confessional poetry but that does not exclude my passion for more conceptual poetry. I think the theme of choice is not what is important in a poem but how you develop it, how you make it a mystery and — at the same time — a revelation. It’s how the poem moves, not what is written in exact words.

WIDBOOK – And what about the aesthetic? Do you think about that or is your attention focused on the senses and the words?

MARCELA THOMÉ – I definitely think about the form when I’m writing. I think that’s exactly the beauty of poetry — this search for a combination of the form and the words. It’s like a battle. The words flirt with the shape of the poem; sometimes they end up fighting and sometimes they fall in love, but in the end it’s the relationship between these two items that makes a poem brilliant. But when I write, I don’t use metrics; I mean, I use a form. Sometimes a form for each poem, but it is really rare for me to use a specific metric — for example sonnets. I do enjoy using them for poetic experiences but I never actually wrote a poem with a metric that pleased me enough. Who knows…maybe one day.

WIDBOOK – How do you feel about contemporary poetry? Are there any characteristics to connect to it?

MARCELA THOMÉ – This is a very difficult subject to discuss, in my point of view, because I think we don’t really know much about it. There isn’t much published contemporary poetry. But from my experience reading my fellow poets (unpublished, I must say) we are definitely entering a new wave of poetry. From what I see, we have brave writers who are engaged to proof that poetry is still a fine art as like music and visual arts. I guess what the contemporary poets have in common is this will of finding this new voice, this new poetic experience. But I don’t think I have the qualification to discuss this matter.

WIDBOOK – Tell us about the literary references that have impacted your work.

MARCELA THOMÉ – What inspires me the most — not what I like exclusively, but what I can relate to more — is definitely the playful, sarcastic and dark types of poets such as Ourides Fontela and Hilda Hilst. I wouldn’t say that my preference for female writers is a political choice but more an intimacy matter. The female voice in poetry does touch me a lot. Not the subject, but how they build their poetic world. Through my readings I always have been sucked most by female voices, by the combination of sad and delicate, and at the same time the harsh and powerful way to use words, which dig a way into my soul and art perspective.

If you want to read more about Marcela Thomé’s poetry,  check out this blog:

By Jr. Bellé

Below are some of her poems in English. Enjoy!


Sometimes I believe
that red lipstick
is the only power
of God that is able
to save me

The black clouds
are missing
my rotting body
during the day

They refuse me

They are begging me
to come back downtown
So they can properly
Spit on me


In cold weathers
such as this
I wish just the same

I tried to stop them

Cars crashing

red flame and fresh gasoline

Sexual Secrets
in sick societies
are all the tales
in the bible

I bet that’s why
depressed women
turn into nuns

Nobody told them
it’s ok to be a frigid
During my sleep
they convince me
that Jesus is better
than a good old spanking

The cross is the mind
Sobriety doesn’t
kiss and tell

Clean minds
make me forget
when I wasn’t
a virgin at last

Shots in the dark
reminds me only
that I truly loved
my pink crayons

It was thick enough
to make me bleed

The big elephant I wish I was

There is a letter
in the space
left under
your door

There is my
on the soft, soft paper

of memories
hidden in
your throat

You give me
a bigger throne
for my big, big thoughts

and then, cynically, you ask me:
Is there an elephant in the room?

The body of my mental heart
I lie to you
promising the truth
Seeking for the fox
that taught me how to hide

Marcela II


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