100 Refutations: Day 15

False Accounts

The black crows are hungry for rose-red meat;
upon a deceitful moon I cast my reflection;
they break their beaks upon it, banging them against the glass,
and as I part—ironic, untouched and glorious—
the black crows fly away, having grown tired of rose-red meat.

Mock love and cold,
marble that tedium varnished to stony flame,
or lily that blush wrapped in rose’s red,
always that which belongs to, my God…
fecund rosary beads
living shirt collar that closes in around
the world’s neck.

Chain of the earth,
constellation fallen.

Oh rosary beads, magnetized by snakes
glimmering to the end, between my fingers,
that within your smile, fifty teeth full
with a big kiss, my life was set aflame:
a rose made of lips.


Delmira Agustini

Delmira Agustini (1886-1914) was born in Montevideo, Uruguay. She was a precocious writer and showed incredible talent from a very early age. She belonged to the “generación de 1900” and stood out as one of the few women poets in the Latin American Modernist movement, earning the admiration of some of the most acclaimed writers of the time (Miguel de Unamuno, Manuel Ugarte, and Rubén Darío, among others). Her writing was marked by a unique eroticism rarely displayed by women writers of the period.

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.