El rezagado / José Antonio Ramos Sucre

The Straggler

     The tempest invades the night. The wind imitates the puffing of a cetacean and beats the doors and windows. The water sweeps the channels of the tile roofs.
     I have left my bed, and have leaned, to watch the street, out the window of the living room in ruins. The meteors light up a white panorama.
     I’m alone in the reestablished darkness, keeping vigil over the earth’s sleep.
     My companions, accustomed to the commotion of steppes and deserts, abandoned me perfidiously in this village, stage of a risky journey. They refused to admit me to the benefit of their wealth, holding for themselves alone the secret of their metals and stones. They would mention a green and salty lake, hidden in a jungle of pines, threatened by the thick fog.
     The village is the encampment of a ferocious band. Men with yellowish skin circle uneasily, sword at hand, conical hat soaked.
     I encourage the hope of returning to my meridional soil, close to the sea burnished by the sun.
     I have negotiated my escape with a needy man, of the vilified aboriginal race.
     He offers to guide me through unused roads, behind the backs of homicidal highway men.
     He and I will definitely escape from this place, where the victims on hooks invite the birds of prey, raised amid the grim clouds.

La torre de Timón (1925)

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

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