Federico García Lorca

(5 June 1898 – 19 August 1936 / Fuente Vaqueros)

Ballad of the Moon


translated by Will Kirkland

The moon came into the forge
in her bustle of flowering nard.
The little boy stares at her, stares.
The boy is staring hard.
In the shaken air
the moon moves her amrs,
and shows lubricious and pure,
her breasts of hard tin.
"Moon, moon, moon, run!
If the gypsies come,
they will use your heart
to make white necklaces and rings."
"Let me dance, my little one.
When the gypsies come,
they'll find you on the anvil
with your lively eyes closed tight.
"Moon, moon, moon, run!
I can feelheir horses come."
"Let me be, my little one,
don't step on me, all starched and white!"

Closer comes the the horseman,
drumming on the plain.
The boy is in the forge;
his eyes are closed.
Through the olive grove
come the gypsies, dream and bronze,
their heads held high,
their hooded eyes.

Oh, how the night owl calls,
calling, calling from its tree!
The moon is climbing through the sky
with the child by the hand.

They are crying in the forge,
all the gypsies, shouting, crying.
The air is veiwing all, views all.
The air is at the viewing.

Submitted: Friday, January 03, 2003

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  • Freshman - 2,493 Points Susan Williams (10/6/2014 5:07:00 PM)

    It says that 73 votes were cast about this poem, yet I am the first to comment. I wish the highly trained minds among us had commented - I would glean so much and learn so much from their thoughts. What struck me, what enveloped me, is the sheer beauty of this poem. I do not know how that beauty was created- whether it was its rhythms or its choice of words or the choice of details. All I know is that I was ensnared and want to read this again and again. (Report) Reply

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