Squirru by others

Voces y miradas sobre Rafael


"...organizer of spirits

hero in his own time

letters and blows

his own manuscript.


More than blood,

the ink

of his presence


A man yesterday

a man today

tomorrow a man

always a poet."

Natalio Jorge Povarché, 1973

"We would like to comment on Rafael Squirru with words which might hopefully transcend the banality of forms. To say, for example, that we can make a list of his achievements but not one of the ways he loved and struggled. To say that this man of America, lucid, aggressive, is also -for what he does and says- a vigilant consciousness of America. And that this vigilance contains a process of effervescence, a boundless commitment to the people of America, a permanent unrest.

His resistance, his opposition against the most obscene forms of darkness and silence, his pledge to time and language, are a sort of resistance in joyfulness, because he believes in things that will not turn into junk, in hard permanence opposing sterile chaos and senselessness. We ignore whether his is a small or a large part of truth. But he is truth. We know that in his letters,

which travel to the four corners of the globe, he always ends with "En la lucha!" - "In the fray!" This book is part of that spirit."


Edna Pozzi, 1973

(from the back cover of Quincunce americano by R. Squirru)

"Rafael Squirru, at times, resembles Zorba, Kazantzakis' great character whose capacity to be surprised never stops, and in whose structure all elements which nature and science put within his reach represent a vital demonstation of man's faith and constancy. Rafael Squirru feels the problems of Latin America boiling in his blood. The New Man of America has in his tall and overwhelming figure -and in his special poetic figure- an inestimable element of the path Argentina and Latin America must follow to get out of the swamp which contains us and that many of us -silent and silenced- know so well."


Ariel Canzani, 1973

"The poet exiled

stretched on the couch

after frugal and American lunch

organization of alienated states

and where Argentina

in space and time?

in the poet's spirit!

Brother and his brother's keeper

sweet and tolerant conscience

he sends me a message

he thinks of me

he thinks of everyone

using his friends

as messengers

of hope

of faith

noble spectator

of disaster

he waits

ready to lead us

to a tropical Patagonia

he saw


André Jordan, 1965

To download


I always know when someone dear to me or important in my life

has passed away, Edgardo Krebs, 2016 Download 

A great guru, Catherine Ward Kavanagh, 1978 Download 

"To Rafael, in your style


Even archangels don't stay long

so try to get questions accurate

as with expensive transatlantic calls

or hospital visiting,

even though we know we know

that the best answers seldom come from questions

but in parables, or a shared feast,

on postcards, or over cups of tea.


Since life makes the rules, not history,

we need more to check lines still open

than that the rules haven't changed;

rules being part of the game

as the first lesson. Then:


courage, to see what's possible,

decorum; filial piety;

at least, to cry and laugh during intervals.

The arts of solitude and shared time

(public life an advanced grade);

guessing the password, while

staying on the Qui Vive.


Your theories to prove it: that

our world, like God's, embraces

all of the Karamasovs,

and allows things to come to pass

according to natural forces, the

supernatural, the diabolical,

inertia and karma, all

holy energy, including law-making;

and that all can be over-ruled

by one thought, in an hour,

or in a grain of sand.


That best contains most.

That God has a sense of humour,

and likes it in others.  Bottom no fool,

nor Siegfried ludicrous, if sung from the heart.


That saints may be doves or serpents.

That pigs are dangerous.

Irony, like activity, a peril

and a quiet life a work of genius.


Mental bricks: Faith, respect, pride;  Hope,

balance, imagination; Love, a creed and a talent.

To diagnose without killing,

build without losing ground.


With questions as answers, write

legibly, on one side only,

in the right order

and with an eye on the clock."


                              Catherine Ward, 1978



"It had reached my ears that the new cultural director of the OAS was an Argentine. Some said he was rather odd and a bit eccentric, that he was wont to walk around the corridors wearing a pampa poncho with a distant air and holding a mate in his hand. Others commented he was anything but conventional, a friend of poets and artists. I had heard of him myself and knew he had founded the Museum of Modern Art of Buenos aires and that he encouraged young talents. I also knew that for certain people there was nothing more suspicious than being different. And Squirru was decidedly different, especially as regards a foreign official. First, because it was difficult to imagine a poet as a foreign official, and Squirru was a poet, a characteristic which was more of a stigma than an asset in that environment.

Each one of us went to him with his own problems and needs. And although he received us with affection and respect, Rafael was strict and of little patience with attitudes of stubbornness or sloppiness, so frequent in artists. It was curious to observe Rafael's sensitive devices at work with people and how he acted in certain circumstances. He forgave anything except disloyalty, pettiness and arrogance..."


Carlos Alberto Salatino, 1979

from the Prologue of Arte de América by R. Squirru page 6



@ Eloisa Squirru, 2017