Why do this?

My father, José Luis Villamizar Melo, passed away in my home town of Cúcuta, Colombia, in August last year. The law and economics were Dad's profession, but literature, history and academia his passion. He wrote and published several books, articles and book chapters. The thing is that so many people have missed out on his work, particularly on his beautiful poetry, which he wrote in Spanish prior to the world wide web. So I thought, what a better way to keep Dad's legacy alive than to bring his writing beyond his world and share it with mine. That is why I am translating over 250 of my Dad's poems to English and publishing them here, one a day, Monday to Friday during 2011 (Dad, a family man, always believed that you shouldn't work on weekends).

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

The hill of the cannon (Cerro del cañón)

Another passage from my Dad’s book Elementary motherland (Patria elemental) inspired by the Thousand Days War.

The hill of the cannon (Cerro del cañón)
When you look at the hill of the cannon, to the west,
think of the sad times of hatred.

It was the Thousand Days War.

One of the parties placed, passed “Santo Domingo”,
beyond “Alfonso López”,
an enormous cannon that used to trouble
the inhabitants of the suburb.

From the edge of the hill,
the infernal invention fired deadly loads
toward the city.

The towers of the cathedral cracked.

Battered, they united with the patron saint of the city
and panic was defeated at first.

Later, hope was reborn.

At the end, victory surged,
and this meant peace to everyone.

Hill of the cannon. Mockery of a past
that the city will not suffer again!

No comments:

Post a Comment