Jose Garcia Villa aka Doveglion.
Born in Singalong, Manila on 5 Aug 1908. National Artist in Literature. He is the son of Simeon Villa, Emilio Aguinaldo’s physician, and Guia Garcia. He graduated from the University of the Philippines (UP) High School and enrolled at at the UP College of Medicine in 1925. Villa first tried painting, but then turned into writing after reading Winesburg, Ohio by Sherwood Anderson. His poetry first gained fame—or notoriety—in 1929, when he was suspended for one year by the UP administration for the publication of “Man Song.” His penmameDoveglion (derived from “Dove, Eagle, Lion”) is based on the characters he derived from himself. These animals were also explored by another poet in Doveglion, Adventures in Value, a poem dedicated to Villa. Villa never finished his medical studies. In 1930 he won the Philippines Free Press literary contest for “Mir-i-nisa” and used the prize money to go to the United States. He enrolled at the University of New Mexico and graduated with a Bachelor of Arts degree and pursued post-graduate work at Columbia University. He taught poetry for a while at the City College of New York, 1964- 1973. He also worked in the Philippine Mission to the U.N., 1954- 1963, and became the vice consul in 1965. After he retired in 1973, he continued to teach professionals in his Greenwich Village residence. Villa started out as a fictionist, with “Footnote to Youth” and “Mir-I-nisa.” In 1932, “Untitled Story” appeared in anthology by Edward J. O’Brien, who culled from different publications his annual Best American Short Stories and Best British Short Stories. The following year, Footnote to Youth, a collection of Villa’s stories, was published by Charles Scribner’s Sons. Some of the pieces here were later included in Selected Stories, 1962, published in the Philippines by Antonio Florentino. His first collection of poetry, Have Come, Am Here, 1942, was published in the US and received critical acclaim.Volume Two,...
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