Made of Nows…

I Was My Own Route (Yo misma fui mi ruta)

Julia de Burgos

 

I wanted to be like men wanted me to be:

an attempt at life;

a game of hide and seek with my being.

But I was made of nows,

and my feet level on the promissory earth

would not accept walking backwards

and went forward, forward,

mocking the ashes to reach the kiss

of new paths.

 

At each advancing step on my route forward

my back was ripped by the desperate flapping wings

of the old guard.

 

But the branch was unpinned forever,

and at each new whiplash my look

separated more and more and more from the distant

familiar horizons;

and my face took the expansion that came from within,

the defined expression that hinted at a feeling

of intimate liberation;

a feeling that surged

from the balance between my life

and the truth of the kiss of the new paths.

 

Already my course now set in the present,

I felt myself a blossom of all the soils of the earth,

of the soils without history,

of the soils without a future,

of the soil always soil without edges

of all the men and all the epochs.

 

And I was all in me as was life in me .. . .

 

I wanted to be like men wanted me to be:

an attempt at life;

a game of hide and seek with my being.

But I was made of nows;

when the heralds announced me

at the regal parade of the old guard,

the desire to follow men warped in me,

and the homage was left waiting for me.

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