Gabriel Moreno

Ballad of the death of Federico Garcia Lorca
(for Mr.Joe Wilkes)

The olives in the trees sparkle
likes shoes of patent leather,
too radiant is this mountain
for a man to meet his end.
Descending from the moon
are its cries of melted silver,
civil guards are not immune
but they are ready for the kill.

Where are the gypsies Lorca?
mocks the captain of the men,
Are they coming to this fiesta?
Are they hiding in their caves?
Did the fear unhinge their knives?
I cannot hear their saddle bells.
Did they discharge their horses
or are they dancing in their tents?

But all the stars responded,
quivering fiercely in the night:
You will ruin this poet’s body,
but you’ll never touch his mind.
O, the smell of blood and wax!
O, the anger of the fig trees!
No bullet from a fascist thug
will deter our birds from singing.

Dark, dark is the heart of Spain,
black reeds grow upon its chest.
All of the angels have departed
for the pain of Lorca’s death!
Heated youths rip off their shirts,
virgin girls insult their mothers,
whimpers for a foreign Christ,
rage for the son of Granada.

Gabriel Moreno was born in Gibraltar in 1977. Graduated in Philosophy and Hispanic Studies at the University of Hull, Yorkshire, UK . Doctorate in Hispanic Literature at the University of Barcelona .Published works in Spanish include, Londres y el susurro de las amapolas, Omicrón (2007). Works in English include “The Hollow Tortoise,” (2012) and Nights in Mesogeois, Annexe (2013). Gabriel is artistic director of poetry and music events in London: The Lantern Society, Notes from Underground and the Poetry Brothel London.

Here is Gabriel reading the poem.