Biography of Yolanda Corsen (1918-1969)

Curaçao poetess, born in Willemstad (capital of the island of Curaçao and the Netherlands Antilles, an autonomous territory belonging to the Netherlands) on November 10, 1918, and died in his hometown on July 31, 1969. Granddaughter of the great poet and music composer Joseph Sickman Corsen - considered the father of literature written in papiamento, the Creole language of the island, and sister of the also writer Charles Corsen, left a brief but intense, poetic work marked by passion and sensuality. It is also known by her literary pseudonym of Oda Blinder, which was served to sign many of their poems.

The family tradition directed his steps towards the study of letters, poetic creation and interest in music (in his case, by jazz). Apparently - and as it can be seen in his writings - had quite solitary a childhood and youth, and adult life that was not fortunate in personal relationships. His main contact with the outside world was the literary group to which he/she belonged, a collective of young local authors that also formed part of, among others, his brother Charles and the famous poet and Narrator Silvio Alberto Marugg, better known as Tip Marugg - whose masterpiece, the novel De morgen loeit weer aan (1988), occupied the top positions of the lists of best-selling books in the Netherlands at the end of the Decade of the 80. Both Yolanda Corsen as the rest of the authors of this group were announced as writers in the pages of the magazine from Stoep (the step), founded in 1940 by the physician Christian Engels, one of the large cultural animators of the beautiful West Indian island.

Young local poets who, like Yolanda Corsen, published his first compositions of Stoep had in common their perfect mastery of the Dutch language (vehicle of expression of this magazine) and his interest in the European avant-garde movements. It is important to know that doctor Engels had founded this publication to provide a forum of cultural debate and literary outreach to Dutch writers who, after the invasion of the Netherlands by the German army during World War II (1939-1945), had abruptly left Europe to seek refuge in that quiet and secluded corner of their homeland. With them came, logically, these experimental and avant-garde trends that were still in force on the continent, and they did rage among local youth with creative concerns. In particular, in the poetic production of Yolanda Corsen is easy to detect the pleasant impression that caused him to surrealism.

Despite this intense contact with the world of literature, the Curaçao writer would have unpublished nor an only book in life if he/she had not have encouraged to collect his poems more deep and intimate at the end of the 1960s, when newly completed the half a century of existence, only he/she had one year of life. This volume, published under the title de Brieven van een Curacaosche shield (letters of a blind Curaçao [Heerlen, Holland, 1968]), consists of poems and texts in prose of extraordinary lyrical density, in which, through images in bold sensual power - that stripe, sometimes with erotic literature itself-, Yolanda Corsen reflects the passionate love and sexual desire that, with vehement instinct, awakened in her a lover.

Four years after the death of the writer of Willemstad a poetry book that had left unpublished saw the light. It's Incognito (Rotterdam, 1973), who, nearly a decade later, would add a new collection of poems Yolanda corsen, entitled Verzamelde Stilte (silence collected (Amsterdam, 1981). In this latest volume, the editors and scholars of his work offered to the reader those new poems that Curaçao author published in the pages of the magazine of Stoep.

JRF