Elsa Wiezell

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Elsa Wiezell
Elsa Wiezell 04030.jpg
Elsa Wiezell
Born Elsa Wiezell Apezteguía
November 19, 1926
Asunción, Paraguay
Died August 23, 2014
Asunción, Paraguay
Nationality Paraguayan
Known for Poetry, Painting
Notable work

Puente sobre el Río Tepecué (Bridge Over the Tapecué River)

Temblor de Acacias (Tremor of Acacias)

"García Lorca" Prize given by "Amigos del Arte" (Friends of Art) Honorary Citizen from the State of Texas, USA

Best Spanish-American Lyrics. Gebers, Sweden

Elsa Wiezell (November 19, 1926 – August 23, 2014[1]) was a Paraguayan poet and teacher. Her work also includes paintings that reside in art galleries and cultural centers of Asunción. She was born in Asunción, Paraguay, daughter of Julia Apezteguía and Rubén Wiezell, of Swedish descent.

Childhood and youth[edit]

She spent her childhood surrounded by her family, playing games and pranks with her siblings Genoveva and Nills in the once quiet streets of Zeballos Cué. They moved later and definitively to Asunción. She completed her primary studies in Asuncion at the International School.

In her youth, her inclination towards poetry was evident, and she began her first literary works at that time. Entranced in her thoughts, she always searched for places of self-discovery. This took her to the college studies at the National University of Asuncion, where she finished her studies with a bachelor's degree in philosophy and literature in 1950.


Elsa Wiezell. December 2007

After graduating, she taught Secondary Level psychology courses at the Benjamin Aceval School in Asunción. She was also in charge of the psychology class at the University of Columbia.

Committed to the diffusion of arts and culture within Paraguay, she founded such institutions as the Modern Art Museum, the journal The Feminist (for which she was chief editor), and the Belle Arts School, serving as director from 1965 to 1977.


Her prolific literary output has positioned her as one of the most active people in the artistic and cultural area of Asunción with more than four decades of unceasing poetic labor.

Year Work
1950 Poemas de un mundo en brumas (Poems of A World in Fog), her first poem book

Tronco al cielo (Trunk to the Sky)

1951 Barro de estrellas (Star's Mud)
1956 Poema ciego (Blind Poem)
1961 Por las calles de Cristo (On the Streets of Christ)
1962 Órbita de visiones (Orbit of Visions)
1964 El canto y la luz (The Sing and The Light). A book rich in original images, the verses are free. The main subject is the anguish of living in a world that lies and scares.
1965 Tiempo de amor (Time of Love)
1966 Temblor de acacias (Tremor of Acacias). This is a book of love poems wherein the mentioned feeling is the main character.

Mensaje para hombres nuevos (A Message for New Men). Speaks of freedom and yearning to reflect on others, giving the best of oneself.

1967 Palabras para otro planeta (Words to Another Planet). With a very special characteristic, taking science as a poetic subject. Has a serene and simple style.
1968 Eco tridimensional (Three-dimensional Echo). Deals with classic subjects in a new style. The main subjects are the anguish of the men about life, and the death as a transcendental state of men.

Puente sobre el río tapecué (Bridge Over the Tapecué River)

1969 Poema ultrasónico (Ultrasonic Poem). Of symbolist and impressionist style.
1970 Sembradores del Sol (Seeders of the Sun)
1972 Virazón Considered the best of her poetic work. Poem of epic style full of fierce fights and anguish for her suffering and bleeding people.
1974 Pobladores fieros (Fiery Inhabitants)

La cosecha del viento norte (The Northern Wind Harvest)

1975 El amor de la brisa del sur (The Love of the Southern Breeze)
1976 El duende fugitivo (The Fugitive Goblin)
1982 Antología (Anthology)
1990 Corceles de alborada (Steeds of Dawn)
1991 El colibrí de quebrada (The Hummingbird of Broken)
1992 Poemas del aire profundo (Poems of the Profound Air)

Escorzo poético

1994 La tierra de los maizales (The Land of Cornfields)

Los dos y el mar (The Two of Us and The Sea)

1995 Rumbo al arcoiris (Heading toward the Rainbow)
1996 Memoria de amor efímero (Memories of an Ephemeral Love)
1997 Canto libertario (Libertarian Song)
2003 Algas azules (Blue Algae)

Temblor de acacias (Tremor of Acacias)

2004 El hombre de la nube (The man of the Cloud)
2005 Barranco (Gorge)

Del amor al olvido (From Love to Oblivion)

2006 Canto entre las piedras (Sing Among the Stones)

Poética del amor (Poetics of Love) Antología (Anthology) La calesita (The carrousel) Lirondela Este es mi pueblo (These are My People). A compilation of brief literary work for children, with a didactic guide for teachers.


Throughout her career, Elsa Wiezell has been internationally acclaimed and rewarded (even more than in her own native Paraguay) and is considered by many critics and academic scholars to be amongst the most important and influential Spanish-language poets of her time. Many scholars study her work, including Charles Richard Carlisle (Professor of Spanish Literature at Southwest Texas University in Texas, United States), Carlos Sabat Ercasty Carlos Sabat Ercasty and Norma Suiffet (Professor of Literature at Institute of Superior Studies in Uruguay and Specialist in Spanish Philosophy at the University of Salamanca, Spain).

Year Outstanding Activity
1950 Values of the Americas Award. American Artistic Selection, Montevideo, Uruguay
1956 Best Spanish-American Lyric Writers (Poets), selected along with Juana de Ibarbourou and Alfonsina Storni. Hettan Spranger Natten, Upsala, Sweden.

Honorable Mention - Pro Women's Rights League Honorable Mention - Guaraní Writers for her book "Bridge over the Tapecué River"

1966 Ocara Poty Cue Mi Gallery of Honor (Hall of Fame)
1967 Federico Garcia Lorca Award
1970 Greatest Poets of the World (selection of 1970). Only representative of Paraguayan poetry (Ben Porter, California, USA) up to this day.

Honorable Mention - 13th Spring Hall from Athenaeum for her work "Belén". Selected as Latin-American representative of "The New Christian Revolution" Der Bu Bist in Exil, Germany.

1977 Honorary Citizen of the State of Texas, USA.

Merit Honors - Institute for Professor Training. Universidad Iberoamericana (Asuncion, Paraguay)

1981 Honorary Member (Phi Sigma Iota) National Foreign Language Association, Southwest Texas State University Chapter, USA.
1992 First Prize in Regional Integration Literature (Argentina)

Distinguished Cultural Maker. Honor Mural. Universidad Iberoamericana (Asuncion) Honorable Mention. "Eternal gratitude for her aid to childhood and youth". Institute for Professor Training. Universidad Iberoamericana. Honorary Merit in Docent Formation. Universidad Iberoamericana (Asuncion).


In her work can be perceived a placid poetic style. Her loose verses give the sensation of peaceful freedom and smooth movement. Her style is rich in literary language.

The inspiration and subjects of her works are almost tangible. Water is a recurrent subject, and she also refers to loneliness and to the dreams that usually clash with a reality manifested, for example, as "painful destiny of the body at the earth...". Carlos Sabat Ercasty has written, "The work of Elsa Wiezell is beautiful and dignified, predetermined by a noble double heroism, marching high and sustaining flight..."[citation needed]


Elsa Wiezell with her son Armando

She was married to Vicente Ferrer Espínola, and had three children: Lourdes, Armando and Patricia.


  1. ^ Última Hora (23 August 2014). "Fallece la poetisa paraguaya Elsa Wiezell" (in Spanish). Retrieved 18 November 2014. 
  • Wiezell, Elsa "Tren del agua" ("Train of the Water"). Imprenta Salesiana. 1996. Asuncion.

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