THE FORBIDDEN HISTORY OF COMMUNISM – a poem by Paul Guillén translated by Nicole Cecilia Delgado and Tom Sligsby

THE FORBIDDEN HISTORY OF COMMUNISM

Human flesh with red and blue worms: there’s a Russian couple sat with the skull of their realpolitik and Isabel already knew of its cavernous looks and its heartbeats beneath the petticoat. The bloody dwarfs creating eons with their saxophones. Liquid gold lights that permeate your pupils. To syllogise is illogical because it’s about a continual panning that turns and turns like a waterwheel (and we all get wet). Isabel, Ezekiel’s neighbour, supports the Oxapampa Nazis. Now, who will bring the honey that trickles out down the highway like blood from a 3000 kilometre per hour road accident? We won’t even find bones to gnaw on there, or pieces of brain adhering to the asphalt that we can lick, and what would become of us just seeing the buses heading into the mountains and their worn away making noises propitious for a silent, ethnic war.


Note: Oxapampa is a province of Peru founded by German and Austrian immigrants in the latter part of the nineteenth century.

LA HISTORIA PROHIBIDA DEL COMUNISMO

Carne humana con gusanos rojos y azules: hay una pareja de rusos sentados junto a la calavera de su realpolitik e Isabel ya sabía de su apariencia cavernaria y de sus latidos debajo de la enagua. Los enanos sangrientos con los saxofones creando eones. Luces de oro líquido que se impregnan en tus pupilas. Todo silogismo es ilógico porque de lo que se trata es de un travelling continuo que gira y gira como una noria de agua (y nos mojamos todos). Isabel, la vecina de Ezequiel, apoya a los nazis de Oxapampa. Ahora, quién traerá la miel que chorrea por la carretera tal si fuera la sangre de un accidente a 3000 kilómetros por hora. Ahí no podríamos encontrar siquiera huesos que roer o pedazos de sesos pegados en el asfalto que lamer y qué sería de nosotros sólo ver pasar los ómnibus rumbo a la cordillera y sus llantas estropeadas harían el ruido propicio para una guerra silenciosa y étnica.

From Hallucinated Horse. New Latin American Poets. London: Pighog Press, 2012.

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