Karina Galvez

Karina Gálvez

Karina Galvez (Guayaquil, July 7, 1964) is an award-winning poet with Ecuadorian and American citizenship. She has lived in Orange County, California since 1985. In 1995, she published her book “Karina Gálvez – Poesía y Cantares”[Karina Galvez – Poetry and Songs], which includes both English and Spanish versions of her poems with a prologue written by León Roldós Aguilera, Ecuador’s former vice president. She is also a songwriter and author of children’s poems and short stories. Her Spanish poems have been translated into English, French, Italian, Portuguese, Romanian, Bulgarian, Slovene, and Czech.


Karina Galvez reading La Batalla del Pichincha

Uploaded to YouTube 2020

Karina Galvez interview

Uploaded to YouTube 2016

Karina Galvez interview

Uploaded to YouTube 2013

Themes in Karina Galvez’ poetry

Karina Gálvez’ poetry is mostly romantic, but she frequently surprises the reader with poems and prose poetry that reflect an acute perception of social issues such as abortion, social class clashes, social turmoil, and lack of tolerance, or with poems of profound historical content, such as her epic poem “La Batalla del Pichincha,” or about Catholic beliefs, such as her poem “Ave, Mi Guadalupana,” which tells of the apparitions of Our Lady of Guadalupe, or with eco-poems (poems about the ecology), tongue-twisters, and even ‘culinary poems’ containing traditional Ecuadorian recipes in rhyme.


Karina Galvez comes from a long line of poets, intellectuals and illustrious Guayaquileans dedicated to the service of the community. She is the daughter of Daddy Gálvez Mora, who was Commander of the Meritorious Fire Department of Guayaquil. She is the great-niece of Arnaldo Gálvez Usubillaga, former Municipal Secretary of Guayaquil in 1926, and Ecuadorian National Chess Champion in 1921, who in 1923 published “Algo de Ajedrez,” [Some Chess] a 444-page book, which was the first book of its genre published in Ecuador and has become a classic of national letters.

Awards and recognitions

  • In 1996, her “Poem for My Mother” won 2nd place in the annual Latin American poetry contest organized by the “Casa de la Cultura” in Long Beach, CA.
  • She was awarded the “Crystal Condor,” top recognition granted to Ecuadorians that have excelled outside national borders, at a ceremony known as the “Ecuadorian Achievement Awards”.
  • In 2011 Karina Galvez was nominated to the First International Medal of Peace and Culture “Presidente Salvador Allende”, in Chile.
  • In 2011, Galvez, together with musician Pablo Goldstein and painter Luis Burgos Flor, was one of the only three non-Mexican artists to be invited to commemorate the 125th anniversary of the opening of the Consulate General of Mexico in Los Angeles, where her poem “Ave, Mi Guadalupana” debuted with Goldstein playing Franz Schubert’s Ave Maria (Schubert) on bandoneón in the background. On March 1, 2016, Galvez along with Toño Escobar from Fundación BienvenidoGYE were David Rockefeller’s hosts and guides on his visit to Guayaquil, Ecuador.
  • On October 23, 2017, the Major Council of Chiefs and Communes of Chiloé (in Chiloé Archipelago, in Los Lagos Region, Chile) through Resolution #7, granted Karina Galvez the title of “Williche de Chiloé Por Gracia” (Williche of Chiloé by Grace), to acknowledge her work for Latin American culture and for the Williche people around the world, a title that essentially means that she was received as a member of the Huilliche people.



  • Poesia y Cantares
  • Poem for my mother (Poema para mi Madre). Premio Casa de la Cultura de Long Beach, 1996.
  • Eres el comienzo y el final de mi poesia. Premio Casa de la Cultura de Long Beach, 1997.
  • Ese, Su Guayaquil Viejo. 1995
  • Como me gustaria.
  • La Batalla del Pichincha.
  • Mis Montañas, las de California.
  • Poesia en el Pent-house.
  • Epicentro.
  • The Earth We Dismembered.
  • Amor a la Ecuatoriana.
  • Ave, Mi Guadalupana.
  • Bienvenido a Guayaquil. Song.
  • Guayalenguas. Tongue-twister.
  • Caldo de Bolas de Verde. Recipe in rhyme.

Poesía y Cantares

“Poesía y Cantares” (“Poetry and Songs”). Poetry book published in 1995 by Ecuadorian poet Karina Galvez. It contains English and Spanish versions of Galvez’ poems. Foreword for the book was written by Leon Roldos Aguilera, former vice-president of Ecuador. 106 pages. Most poems are love poems, but poems about Guayaquil, California, and children’s poems were also included.

Children’s poems, stories and songs

  • The Little Southern Star (La Estrellita del Sur).
  • Once upon a time, there was a duck (Habia una vez un pato).
  • El Tornillo de Guayaquil, a fable-poem about a skyrise named “The Point”, but known as “El Tornillo” (“The Screw”), in Guayaquil, Ecuador.

Prose poetry

  • Ecuador que Duele.

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