100 Refutations: Day 21

“There will be no end to my flowers”

There will be no end to my flowers,
nor a ceasing to my song.
I, singer, in singing lift,
while they split and spread.
Even after they have wilted and yellowed,
they will be taken in,
carried into the house
of the gold-plumed bird.



Nezahualcóyotl of Tezcoco (1402-1472) is known as one of the most famous, influential, and frequently cited poets of the Aztec world. During his life he received the title of tlamantini, or “he who knows something”—a title that was bestowed upon those who contemplated the ancient enigmas of humanity and the earth, as well as those of divinity and the grave. He was also the supreme ruler of Tezcoco and premier advisor of Tenochtitlan. Nezahualcóyotl has been referred to as “the poet king” by modern scholars.

Lina M. Ferreira C.-V.

Lina M. Ferreira C.-V. (100 Refutations translator and editor) earned MFAs in creative nonfiction writing and literary translation from The University of Iowa. She is the author of Drown Sever Sing from Anomalous Press and Don’t Come Back from Mad River Books, as well as editor, with Sarah Viren, of the forthcoming anthology Essaying the Americas. Her fiction, nonfiction, poetry, and translation work has been featured in journals including Bellingham ReviewChicago ReviewFourth GenreBrevityPoets & Writers, and The Sunday Rumpus, among others. She won Best of the Net and Iron Horse Review’s Discovered Voices Award, has been nominated for two Pushcart Prizes, and is a Rona Jaffe fellow. She moved from Colombia to China to Columbus, Ohio to Richmond, Virginia, where she works as an assistant professor for Virginia Commonwealth University. Visit www.linawritesessays.com.

English translation copyright (c) Lina M. Ferreira C.-V., 2018.