Song Of The Employee
We are dogs that abandon dogs.
We roam over trails reminiscent of the sound of swarms.
A better future does not await the gods.
I am going to die, and those are my lineages.
I have come to a place where beauty is measured in stones
from men who tell me;
I have come and I will stay until I draw a contour with particles
of the invisible;
a profile that declaims me: face, smell, vulva of thought.
I have come to give myself a name just before my eyes are
Because I was not born the daughter of aristocrats, although I
have a taste for the fruits of the sea and I sympathize with oats,
because I did not have the ability to deceive the merchants and
there is no forgiveness, because I knew the epidemics
because I am going to die from an elementary illness and it will
be in the absence of heroes.
Something simple and terrible is happening:
hunger condemns, the cold condemns
there is a death before death and it is this commerce
to be saved from hunger and cold condemns and over
the hours a genocidal change transpires where life and
imagination lose their life.
Not as a child and I do not know how but I finally believed in
the necromancers shouting from the ridges of the city
that the heroic had died, and that passion is a tumor.
I’m going to speak for the girls who smell their hands and still
for the fisher boys who taught me how to seduce
the winds and to add their fury to my route
while they believed I spoke their language
while they believed in God and God in their favor
I’m going to speak for those of the irreparable encounter
and I’m going to speak for the lady with eyes from the
countryside and udders with eternal milk.
That is my mother.
They deserve this—that I pronounce my name before
My keepsake will be the vine where the blind woman who
comes to seize me falls.
In image and likeness.
Girls, Mother, Kids, how do I warn you
she has a brightness that becomes essential in the time
it takes to make a mountain
she has a book where all flavors and a bird on the shoulder that
swallows a moan and spits out a map find their grave.
In the archway I describe in order to live there, in that slow
pirouette over stinking waters, that is my death.
Or why not me exempt from this laceration by a bout of luck?
The only beautiful salvation is the one that is almost bereaved.
Only the seriously wounded understands salvation.
I would respond with a wormless joy of the new father
and the captain who finds fish
the one who expels its fluid and ignores himself for a moment
the gagged captive’s and everything was a simulation
the miner’s, who once again recognizes the sun
the abysmal joy of the animal in its being.
This papal bull I ask for is not good enough for the gold-
winning athlete—it is scorned by those who believe
in the work of men, and it is a disgrace to the leaders of
All of them filled with ire and reason, have their kingdom in this world
and their motives.
If something saves me, I promise the child’s gratitude for
his punishment, the gambler for his limits, the lunatic for
But I know that nothing will absolve me; my parents are not
aristocrats and my soul distrusting of feigned vice
and of the stillness of yachts. Nobody will absolve me.
And I do not present myself as the Princess of Pleasures.
I know of no devices to use to fly higher, and there are days
when I can barely move.
I am not here to segregate myself from my neighbor, nor
so he embarrasses himself before the pearls of my blood.
My blood is only of a certain age and its color promises
fatigue and flows in pursuit of tenderness.
Forgive me. My crime is having understood how they drew
The face is a disease, the consciousness a pandemic
and I only ask to die from my ills.
I ask for space to die.
I ask that they take the toys from the room, that light enters
and that no one distracts the panic from the walls.
I request a home for the transfiguration because only in it
do I appreciate the word house, I satisfy the seed
of silence and I begin to like the impassivity of trees.
If someone saves me from this death by workday, I promise
to identify him with my health.
If something liberates me from the evangelist of utility, I
promise to call it
cause of colors
dominion of the imagination
bread of the absent
Translated by Curtis Bauer
“Song of the Employee” is from Los Heridos Graves [The Seriously Wounded] (Barcelona, DVD, 2005).
You can read and listen to the poem in the original Spanish here.