to follow the neck to the last bit of splendor
to hop a train with the hope of falling off
at the end of the bridge and
to land intact
to open the eyes
over rooftops where
verse can be hurled
to label the hemlock that grows in
to order around the obese and frazzled wife who
does not whet the blade in the skin of her
who dotes with methodical sweetness rubbing the
under a thin beard that ponders the temptation
to amuse oneself with a white joke
where the narcotics float
to deplore the sadness
to harrass her with nettled barbs
to cut her off
she offering him pitfalls
(that we do not see from any hint in the eye
they paralyzed hand in hand)
in the end
putting on faces that do not seem to be their own.
Translated from the Spanish by Zoë Anglesey.
—Liliana Ramos Collado: Puerto Rico (1954). Literary critic, translator, poet.