Los elementos / José Antonio Ramos Sucre

The Elements

The fisherman from the sandy island was referring me to the myths of gentility, preserved in the humble tradition. He looked like the febrile cicada, image of eloquence in the fables of Homer, when he decanted them in an unheard of form.
     The fisherman was insisting on the case of a young man sacrificed by Achilles. He had departed crying to the kingdom of the dead and aspired to see once more the panorama of the day. The muses came from the mountain to extinguish the bonfire of his ashes and provoked the birth of a spring, dawn mirror, in that same inflamed ground. The waters from the spring satisfied, indefinite years, the thirst of the horses of sidereal carriages.
     The fisherman went on to describe for me the vengeful return of the fire from the infernal abyss and its effect on the waters of the spring, transformed into a quick cloud of smoke.
     A breeze of celestial origin was dissolving his uncivil beard and some ancient birds, perched on egregious ruins, were assenting to the enthusiastic tale.

El cielo de esmalte (1929)

{ José Antonio Ramos Sucre, Obra completa, Caracas: Biblioteca Ayacucho, 1989 }

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