Today I joyously touch a face
formed of tiny faces,
I touch the great common face.
I see face and face walking,
-like two enemy tempests
to the divine encounter of the lightning bolt-
toward the chiseled father countenance
formed of men living mutely
in hunger, barefoot of kisses, memories and dreams.
The great common face walks
like a giant man
made of people and spring,
of metal and blood, of dawn
and tears martyred in vain,
but his footsteps go two by two
taking the stairs one by one
with no retreat.
(That gigantic common face
resembles itself and all the people
of the earth, and it is made by
blows of desolation with
solid sparks of friendship.)
(I still kindle sorrow
when I see bitter salt roll
upon the decayed poverty
of solitary men.
I still suffer my present pain
when I see hunger stalk
the poor neighborhoods of my tiny country.
I still cry eternal suffering
when I hear workers cough
and a drawn bloody sorrow
bursts thundering from their lungs
like raging crows.
I suffer still and crumble
like a cliff of thick salt,
but I stand and lift my face
to blend it with the great common face
built of profound faces
that suffer without the harvest of the land.)
I go the path of the great common face
and its ecstasy rains of my throat
so accustomed to grief,
because I bleed and endure and cry still,
with my semblance of disguised torture. And, alone,
I dissolve my forehead in the dark.
But I go the path of the common face
with a great echoing of battles.
-Oh, great countenance like the spring,
noble like the wheat, sweet like the corn!
Oh father of the air and of the temples,
builder of solid stones!
Oh Maker of all that exists:
save me from misery and weeping.
Find me your riverine harvest of smiles
that I may rejoice to have been born
now and at this precise moment of my century,
but I go the path of the common face
and with me march many.
Oh Great Common Face! Father and father again
upon the newborn stones I tremble with love,
each day nearing more and more your tenderness!
trans. by Tina Alvarez Robles