More Poetry of Nicolás Guillén

Musical Soul

I’m just a drunkard. I am seduced

By a luminescent blue wine, a mere illusion

That a burst of spring has induced.

In my heart and my future destination

I sing with joy and without cares

A song well suited to a solemn procession

And then I sing of triumphs with fanfares

And harmonize with rhythm any joyous occasion

Even if life my mad soul should batter,

I shall still strum my simple chord

No hands shall pluck me, nothing will matter.

My heartstrings shall throb of their own accord.

When death’s hand with quiet cruelty,

Tears asunder my song-filled breast

And turns me into dust for all eternity,

My song will resonate without rest.

And again and again, in my astral wanderings

I will my longings for harmony fulfill

With cascading musical outpourings

And the simple joy of a tiny trill