Head Over Heels with Life

10-17 Carranza
María Mercedes Carranza
1945 – 2003


I will die mortal,
that is to say having passed
through this world
without breaking or staining it.
I didn’t invent a single vice,
but I tasted all the virtues:
I leased my soul
to hypocrisy: I have trafficked
with words,
with signs, with silence;
I surrendered to the lie:
I have hoped for hope,
I have loved love,
and one day I even pronounced
the words My Country;
I accepted the hoax:
I have been mother, citizen,
daughter, friend,
companion, lover;
I believed in the truth:
two and two are four,
María Mercedes ought to be born,
ought to grow, reproduce herself and die
and that’s what I’m doing.
I am the sampler of the 20th century.
And when fear arrives
I go to watch television
to have a dialogue with my lies.


Translation by Mary Crow

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