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AFRO-NETS> Poems from Galeano

  • Subject: AFRO-NETS> Poems from Galeano
  • From: Claudio Schuftan <aviva@netnam.vn>
  • Date: Sun, 31 Aug 2003 10:29:09 -0400 (EDT)

Poems from Galeano

Enjoy these pieces by Eduardo Galeano, the Uruguayan writer.

Our system is one of detachment;
to keep silenced people from asking questions,
to keep the judged from judging,
to keep solitary people from joining together,
and the soul from putting together its pieces.


Fleas dream of buying themselves a dog,
and nobodies dream of escaping poverty:
that one magical day good luck will suddenly rain down on them --
will rain down in buckets.

But good luck doesn't rain down yesterday, today, tomorrow, or ever.
Good luck doesn't even fall in a fine drizzle,
no matter how hard the nobodies summon it,
even if their left hand is tickling, or if they begin their day with
their right foot, or start the new year with a change of brooms.

The nobodies: nobody's children, owners of nothing.
The nobodies: the no ones, the nobodied, running like rabbits, dying
through life, screwed every which way.
Who are not, but could be.
Who don't speak languages, but dialects.
Who don't have religions, but superstitions.
Who don't create art, but handicrafts.
Who don't have culture, but folklore.
Who are not human beings, but human resources.
Who do not have faces, but arms.
Who do not have names, but numbers.
Who do not appear in the history of the world, but in the police
blotter of the local paper.
The nobodies, who are not worth the bullet that kills them.

[The Nobodies]

Where do people earn Per Capita Income?
More than one poor starving soul would like to know.
In our countries, numbers live better than people.
How many people prosper in times of prosperity?
How many people find their lives developed by development?

[Those Little Numbers and People]

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