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Alianza y condena

Almost a Legend (1991). This title includes songs that glorify the origin from the closeness of death, the vital tedium and the awareness of love as key to salvation, both for the poet and the reader.

Casi una leyenda, Barcelona, Tusquets, 1991, 86 p., (Nuevos textos sagrados, Marginales, 112).

- Barcelona, Tusquets, 2ª ed., 1991.
- Barcelona, Tusquets, 3ª ed., 1993.
- Madrid, Fundación ONCE, 2000, text in braille.
- Zamora, Instituto de Estudios Zamoranos Florián de Ocampo, Seminario Permanente Claudio Rodríguez, 2009.



And is there no danger, salvation, punishment,
October curse
after the night’s deep promise,
along with the harassment of the rain that before
was a very fertile secret and now is washing
my memory, unfaithfully sounding,
tranquil enemy in this street?
And the dark throbbing of destiny,
not yet mature today?
I hear the nocturnal clarity and the wind’s cunning,
as if always thirsty and fleeing.
But where is it, where
that secret nest of the swallows’
dawned wings?
Someone’s calling me from
those windows, waiting for the dawn,
from those transparent houses, lonely,
with sparkles and ashes
and with the legacy of their scars while
this closed door turns into music
waiting for a hand that will open it
without fear or dust. And where the neighbours?


Dawn is breaking.
And when the seeds of rain
make fertile the silence and the mystery,
the foam of the trace
sounding restlessly, shuddering,
as if it were the first time
amid the air and the light and a caress,
no longer important as before
the vibrant song, forged
in the shape of the iron of balconies,
the sunstruck roof-tiles
nor the matt, dark blue
of concrete and of the heavens.
The street is rising. And who’s treading on it?
Should one’s step be allowed, like water,
to strip and wash
sometimes dry, agile or immoderate;
other times, as now
a poor companion, without devotion or boldness,
wandering aimlessly and with distrust
amid a deceived, debased people,
with unready life,
with unsung freedom?

This pavement, like a wing, is talking to me,
and this shaded wall that fixes and shapes
with whitewash without thyme or unlucky flight
my lost youth. I should go on. Farther…
And I go from door to door
up and down the street
and before I leave
I want to see that face in mid window,
transparent and quiet
along with the amazement of its intimacy
with the cadence of the nestless glass
very well transfigured by the light,
by the plateau’s harsh reflection,
with needy shyness,
looking out silently and adventurously.
I want to see that face. And to see myself in it.


Dawn has broken. And very just rained-on corner
sings, trembles. The concrete and the heavens
are very high.
The air is calling me out of habit,
The new violet of the clouds
hesitates, shrinks back. And very openly
the swallows fly and so does the city without jambs,
the blooming bronze of the bells. Where,
where my steps? Say good-bye.
Let this street
continue talking to you, even if you never return.

Translated by Luis Ingelmo and Michael Smith, Collected Poems / Poesía Completa 1953-1991. Exeter. Shearsman Books, 2008.