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Absolute  (1918) 
by César Vallejo, translated from Spanish by Wikisource
From the collection The Black Heralds (Los heraldos negros)

Color of old clothes. A dark July,
and a just-reaped August. And a
watery hand that grafted evil fruits
onto the resinous pine from boredom.

 Now that you’ve anchored, dark clothes,
you return drenched in a sumptuous scent
of time, of abbreviation... And I have sung
the desired and overflowing feast.

But can’t you, Lord, against death,
against the limit, against what ends?
Ah, the old-clothing-colored sore,
how it slightly opens and smells of burnt honey!

Oh sublime unity! Oh that which is one
for all!
Love against space and against time!
A single heartbeat,
a single rhythm: God!

And as the boundaries shrink back
in a rough unyielding disdain,
there’s a stream of serpents
in the virgin plenitude of 1.
A wrinkle, a shadow!

Copyright.svg PD-icon.svg This work is a translation and has a separate copyright status to the applicable copyright protections of the original content.

This work is in the public domain in the United States because it was published before January 1, 1924.

The author died in 1938, so this work is also in the public domain in countries and areas where the copyright term is the author's life plus 80 years or less. This work may also be in the public domain in countries and areas with longer native copyright terms that apply the rule of the shorter term to foreign works.


This work is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported license, which allows free use, distribution, and creation of derivatives, so long as the license is unchanged and clearly noted, and the original author is attributed.