Illinois State Library

Illinois Center for the Book

Individual Author Record

General Information

Name:  Orlando Menes  

Pen Name: Orlando Ricardo Menes

Genre: Poetry

Audience: Adult;

Born: 1958 in Lima Peru

-- Website --
-- Orlando Menes on WorldCat --

Illinois Connection

Menes attended the University of Illinois-Chicago and received a Ph. D. in Creative Writing.

Biographical and Professional Information

Orlando Ricardo Menes was born in Lima, Perú, to Cuban parents but has lived most of his life in Miami, Florida. He spent two years in Spain in the early 70's. He holds a BA and MA in English at the University of Florida. His poems have appeared in many journals including: ''The Florida Review'', ''Poem'', ''Negative Capability'' and ''The Ohio Poetry Review''. Since 2000 he has taught in the Creative Writing Program at the University of Notre Dame, where he is currently serving as its director. In addition to the books he has published, Menes has edited two anthologies of poetry: [ ''The Open Light: Poets from Notre Dame, 1991-2008''] and [ ''Renaming Ecstasy: Latino Writings on the Sacred.''] Besides his own poems, Menes has published numerous translations of poetry in Spanish, including ''MY HEART FLOODED WITH WATER: SELECTED POEMS BY ALFONSINA STORNI'' (Latin American Literary Review Press, 2009). That same year he received a Literature Fellowship from the National Endowment for the Arts.

Published Works Expand for more information

Titles At Your Library

Borderlands with angels
ISBN: 0963784951

Bacchae Press. 1994

Orlando Ricardo Menes first collection of poetry, the winner of the 1994 Bacchae Press Chapbook Competition. Professionally printed on heavy stock.

Rumba Atop the Stones
ISBN: 190071549X

Peepal Tree Press Ltd.. 2001

In verse rich in imagery and metaphor, Cuban-American poet Orlando Menes constructs a cosmic vision of the Caribbean that weaves African, European and indigenous elements into a vibrant synthesis. The voices of communist, Christian and Orisha devotee blend in baroque celebration of the Caribbean's unique heritage.

Furia: Poems
ISBN: 1571314202

Milkweed Editions. 2005

This eye-opening and exotic new poetry collection tells a story in a way that few books of poetry do. Filled with colors, textures, tastes, and beautifully crafted language, these sensual poems recall the author's Peruvian/Cuban ancestry and his childhood in Peru and Florida, taking the reader on a journey full of delights — and dangers. There are maids who serve monkeys for dinner, elementary-school thugs wielding knives, and frogs falling from the sky, as Furia confronts issues of race, culture, and identity and portrays the world's vastness and diversity — as well as its simple pleasures.

Fetish: Poems (Prairie Schooner Book Prize in Poetry)
ISBN: 0803264917

University of Nebraska Press. 2013

From sensual pleasures and perils, moments and memories of darkness and light, the poems in Orlando Ricardo Menes’s collection sew together stories of dislocation and loss, of survival and hope, and of a world patched together by a family over five generations of diaspora. This is Menes’s tapestry of the Americas. From Miami to Cuba, Panama to Bolivia and Peru, through the textures, sounds, colors, shapes, and scents of exile and emigration, we find refuge at last in a sense of wholeness and belonging residing in this intensely felt, finely crafted poetry.

Speaking Engagements

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