100 Refutations: Day 87


Rings the final hour,
That forever from you keeps me!
If only I, myself, could keep
The hope that you’ll think of me!

But, gods! I know my tears are shed in vain,
Crushed by dire dejection,
My voice extinguished,
When I say, “I will never see you again!”

Beneath the willow’s shade,
I’ve hung my funeral lyre:
And now only the wind plucks from it a sighing song
A recitation of my heart’s complaint.

I know she will now quiver
In another lover’s embrace,
And the moan that will escape her,
Will be the faithful echo of my pain.

Oh, farewell, sweet country, farewell forever!
As quietly the moon marches on,
As her ethereal beams light up
The lambent blue of your towers.

In your breast I have placed,
Each precious thing that was ever mine,
Each object in sight, witness of my weeping,
Oh, country of mine, one very last time.

Oh, dearest friend, please suspend
This disconsolate wailing,
For an aching soul reveals
That still, there be one more suffering to suffer.

One tear alone would be enough
To gift you back, all of my love:
So do not condemn me to the torture
Of loving you, losing you, and having life yet left to live.

I will die in lost regions,
Where there are no meadows, no overgrown jungle,
Where pale roses shall never
Cover my forgotten grave.

I will die with my lips aflame
Pressing to me the image of my lost lover,
Whispering finally:
“Oh, God, I will never see her again.”


María Josefa García Granados

María Josefa García Granados (1796-1848) was one of Guatemala’s principal literary figures despite the many limitations placed on her due to her gender and the customs of the time. She carved out for herself an important place in the poetic scene, publishing widely—first under a male pseudonym and then under her own name—and founding two newspapers. She was a renowned feminist ahead of her time and the co-author of one of the most scandalous pieces of Guatemalan literature, described by many as a pornographic piece of ingenious craftsmanship and superb rhyme, which she dedicated to the clergyman, José María Castilla. She was also the sister of the first liberal president of Guatemala, Miguel Garcia Granados. Because of her many important political connections, she had to flee her country and live in a semi-voluntary exile during a volatile political period that did not favor her brother.

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.