The Poetry Question

Discovering the Relevance of Words

Gabriel Garcia Marquez – Truth and Beauty in Magical Realism


March 6, 1927 – April 17, 2014

For some reason I didn’t read One Hundred Years of Solitude until my sophomore year of college. I was taking a class on Magical Realism, and I had sort of scoffed at it because I thought that Magical Realism was just another form of Fantasy Fiction. I was definitely not a fan of fantasy, but my professor, Darlene Pagan, urged me to keep an open mind. I’m very glad that I did.

I devoured the work of Marquez, and fell for his words, his obvious passion for love, for beauty, and for his insightful understanding of human nature. Reading through “A Very Old Man with Enormous Wings” was a game changer. It was the first piece I read where I understood that this world of Magical Realism wasn’t fantasy; it simply was, and I could feel myself as part of it. There was an aching to notice others for what they were, and move away from my adolescent world of judgement. There was such truth in his words. Such a longing for his readers to learn a sense of compassion.

Gabriel Garcia Marquez will be missed, but luckily, we have his words. And our children, and their children, will also have his words, and for that, I am thankful.


About Christopher Margolin

Chris Margolin spent more than a decade in Education as a high school English teacher, and is now an Instructional Coach for the Longview School District. He is also the founder of The Poetry Question, an online journal which focuses on reviews of small press poetry publications, and runs a regular series called "The Power of Poetry," where notable poets share their personal stories of how poetry has affected their lives. Margolin resides in Vancouver, Washington with his wife, and daughter.

One comment on “Gabriel Garcia Marquez – Truth and Beauty in Magical Realism

  1. Anne Rogge
    April 17, 2014

    I read One Hundred Years of Solitude and Love in the Time of Cholera as a sophomore at UW. I took Comparative Literature from the iconic professor, Willis Konick. I was so lame as a sophomore in college that I read GGM’s work, but didn’t really get it. It wasn’t until much later that I re-read GGM and was able to fully comprehend and understand his work. When I initially read GGM, I was so exhausted from rowing that I could hardly make it through my reading assignments without dozing off. Thankfully, books offer us second chances.

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