La Patria Herida

The Wounded Homeland
by Jesus Franco Ospina, translated by Guillermo Calvo Mahé (Translation © Guillermo Calvo Mahé; Ocala, Florida, 2007; all rights reserved)

My homeland,
death’s scythe
runs through your fields,
your rivers are stained by blood
and your prairies and mountains
are a harvest of crosses and tears.

Your nights
are no longer nights intoxicated
with stars and moons,
they’re abysmal
and desperate nights.
Those hard of heart,
the lords of war
and the brokers of power,
have turned life into
a business and banquet of death.

My homeland.
I, a painter of your rivers,
of your skies, of your seas,
of your valleys and of your mountains;
your pains
have blighted[1] my colors,
my brushes and my soul.


[1] Really “sickened” but blighted seemed to better fit the metaphor.

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