Jean-Yves Solinga was born in Algeria, of French parents, moving to Morocco as a babe in his mother’s arms when his father was transferred to Salé: practically across from the Kasbah des Udayas of Rabat. Thereafter, he spent an idyllic youth between Morocco and Southern France. Upon settling in America with his family, at the age of 15, he soon began writing poetry as a teenager: being first published in A Letter Among Friends along with John Norman of New London, CT. After leaving College, Jean-Yves began a successful career in teaching and lecturing. He holds a doctorate in French on the representation of the Maghrebian [North African] landscape found in the texts by Pierre Loti, André Gide, Albert Camus and Jean-Marie Le Clézio.
Since his retirement he has published several books of poetry: Clair-Obscur of the Soul (2008), Clair-obscur de l’âme [in French] (2008), In the Shade of a Flower (2009), Landscape of Envies (2010), Words Made of Silk (2011). His books offer a singularly unique view of mankind’s reflection through the prism of the lyrical language and the quasi impressionist imagery of his poetry. “At times, some passages are examples of the translation of the human condition into pure thought” writes Michael Linnard.
He has been a featured speaker at the Alliance Française of New Haven and Hartford. Presented at the Center of the Teaching of French at Yale University and Southern Connecticut State University on the use of poetry in language studies. Published in “Art et poésie” edited by the renowned French poet Jean-Claude George. He has read at the Poetry Institute of New Haven, Wesleyan University book store, the Cantab Lounge in Cambridage, the Blue Star Café in Providence, the Guilford Green Barn. He has featured at the Arts café in Mystic, the Hygienics, the Bean and leaf, the Bank Square Bookstore. He has co-featured at the Mystic Art Gallery, and at the Harriet Beecher Stowe Center on the theme of social justice in poetry. Jean-Yves has had poems published by the Free Poet Collective Ekpharsis Project at the New Britain museum, the Ekpharsis Loft Anthology of Providence and the Little Red Tree Anthology. His poetry has been nominated three times for a Pushcart Award.
Jean-Yves Solinga is a poet of immense ability and range whose poetry is truly remarkable. It contains many breathtakingly beautiful and sophisticated poems that reach out to the very limits of the human condition where true art exists. Many facets of his work find inspiration and perspective in his cultural duality. This gives his poems an historical and critical breath.
In Impressions of Reality Jean-Yves continues to search, as did Montaigne, into the individual experience for something beyond the biographic or the particular: towards the universal. His, are poems that transcend the personal experience. His themes and images go into the elements of the contingent and accidental to find the eternally repeated and repeatable human moments.
Author recordings: In the Shade of a Flower
IN THE SHADE OF A FLOWER
Like detecting the subtle aroma
Of her favorite spice in a complex sauce.
Like hearing the quasi feminine solo
Of her favorite male singer mixed in with other songs.
Like the shock of mistakenly recognizing
Her virile voice among others behind you at the coffee shop.
All of these are found in the cacophony
Of the extraneous baggage of daily life.
Loved pieces of the Universe following us restlessly.
Ironically it is from what is small and diminutive,
What is retreating and respectful,
It is from what hides inside the obvious,
It is deep under the blanket of protection
…from the pain of remembrance…
That the richness and multiplicity
Of tangible morsels of happiness and sighs
Reemerge, one day, when we least expect them.
The body and the mind are indeed the poet’s temple.
In it, the divinities have given us
The language of symbols and synesthesia
That make one… sunsets and flesh.
Scent and person. Perfume and moment.
Allowing the impossible to exist.
Making the past walk again next to us.
And so, although he was in the middle
Of the sterile hardness of an urban sidewalk,
Although the evaporation
Of diesel and hot-dogs was nauseating,
Although he was late again for that meeting,
Although it was late in his life,
Vapors of the essence of the natural, organic,
Sun blessed presence of the accidental smell of a flower
Invaded his being.
After all these years, after all the distance,
She was still inside of him.