de las Casas, Walter 1947-
de las CASAS, Walter 1947-
PERSONAL: Born February 3, 1947, in Havana, Cuba; naturalized U.S. citizen; son of Mario and Aracelia (Vivo) de las Casas. Ethnicity: "Hispanic." Education: Iona College, B.A. (cum laude), 1970; Hunter College of the City University of New York, M.A., 1977; doctoral study at City University of New York, 1987-94. Politics: Liberal Democrat.
ADDRESSES: Home—323 Dahill Rd., Apt. 1A, Brooklyn, NY 11218-3848.
CAREER: Teacher of French and Spanish at middle schools in New Rochelle, NY, 1970-72, and Dobbs Ferry, NY, 1972-73; bilingual teacher at elementary schools in Roosevelt, NY, 1973-74; teacher of Spanish, bilingual Spanish, and other subjects at a high school in Brooklyn, NY, 1974-75, 1977-93; Science Skill Center High School, Brooklyn, NY, teacher of Spanish language and literature, 1994-96.
MEMBER: American Association of Teachers of Spanish and Portuguese.
AWARDS, HONORS: Medal from American Legion, 1965, for an essay on "Americanism."
La Ninez que dilata (poetry in Spanish), Editorial Catoblepas (Madrid, Spain), 1986.
Libido (poetry in Spanish), Linden Lane Press (Princeton, NJ), 1989.
Tributes (poetry in English), E. Press, 1993.
Discourse (poetry in English), Minerva Press (Toledo, OH), 1999.
Contributor to periodicals, including Hispania.
WORK IN PROGRESS: Hojas Dispersas, in Spanish.
SIDELIGHTS: Walter de las Casas once told CA: "Poetry is the lyrical expression of my intimate, interior, psychological life and of human relationships. It is also the lyrical expression of knowledge. Poetry should be transparent, a clean windowpane through which living feeling shines."
More recently he commented: "My main influence in writing comes from the work of the Cuban poet Heberto Padilla, in particular his poetry book Fuera del juego. Although my first poems were in English in 1968, I had a long hiatus from poetry because of my work as a teacher. In 1976, after rereading Fuera del juego, I began to write poetry again. Having almost finished my master's degree in Spanish, I wrote in Spanish, as my first two books attest. However, my subscription and readings from the London Review of Books influenced me to write also in English. My writing process up to this point is that I get an overwhelming feeling about something, and I just begin to write until the feeling is spent."