100 Refutations: Day 26

The Siege of Huexotzinco

She is besieged, she is despised,
the city of Huexotzinco:
With weapons she is encircled, pierced by darts, Huexotzinco.

Roar the tortoise-shell drums in your home, in Huexotzinco
Where Tecayehuatzin rules, and where sings his song and plays his flute
prince Quecehuatl, in his home, Huexotzinco

Listen: our father has come down, Camaxtli,
for in the house of Tigers, the drum thunders
echoing the song of tortoise-shell drums.

Only so, flowers petals tear down pillars
torn and dragged away are their fine clothes
all the city kept, safe in her coffer, city of Camaxtli

Consumed by the fire now, your houses built of precious stones
My houses too, of treasured books, all that was your home, Oh Camaxtli!


Ayocuan Cuetzpaltzin

Celebrated wise man and poet from Chalco, Ayocuan Cuetzpaltzin was the son of Cuetzpaltzin, the chichimeca governor Cohuayocan. He was born in the second half of the fifteenth century and died near the beginning of the sixteenth.

Lina M. Ferreira C.-V.

Lina M. Ferreira C.-V. 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.