Confesión, by Enriqueta Arvelo Larriva

Poem by Enriqueta Arvelo Larriva, 1886-1962, Venezuela. English translation by Liz Henry.


En pleno campo
asaltóme el miedo.
Y me inquietó el trino claro
y el emboscado ruido.
El sol en acción,
la tendida sombra.
La quietud del tronco,
el estremecimiento de la rama viva.

Y corrí sin ley.
Me llevaba el miedo.
Las cintas filosas de un cañal tupido
me hirieron el rostro.
Corría de miedo.
Y nadie lo supo.
Y me avergüenzo.


Full wild in the field
fear assaulted me.
And the bright wheat unnerved me
and the rustle of ambush.
The sun, signifying;
the diffuse shadows.
The tree trunk’s quietness,
the extremity of living branches.

And I ran, lawless, wild.
Fear had overcome me.
The dividing ribbons of a reed-thick stream
scratched my face.
I was running from fear.
And no one knew.
And I was ashamed.

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