I cannot commit poems to memory, cannot trust a mind
That is failing as I speak to you.
The poems belong to the page and you,
Let them do their work in your heart–

Each night I close my eyes, I die.
Each day I wake, I am born again.
I am dancing with Death, my silent partner.
He knows the dance of life better than I
Each step before we take it.

I go out to visit my mother, the sea
I give her my sadness, love and longing, she listens.
She rewards me with a blue pearl, salt and light
She says, “Dance with grace my son, I am with you.”

Looking up, my vision blurs, the sky is as blue as the night black.
Looking down I am blinded by darkness.
I look left and right, see all dancing with death.
It it the truth of my life–  In a dream

I fly over the ocean to Spain, I am in the ring with the bull.
I look up, there is only blue, I look down there is only earth.
It is the truth of my life.  I look left and right
Spin my red cape, la capa, shouting at the bull

Quisas estoy loco, loco al bailar con tigo!
No me mires, eschucha a mi corozon.
Que hay musica profunda, musica trajica.
Es la verdad de mi vida, la verdad de vida.

Death takes even the truth we find in life.
Matador of words, I hope to charm him with poems
Dancing in the dream of a dream…

Hey, hey, toro! I kneel before the bull, “Come on!
Come kill me. Do it quickly.” He rakes the dirt with a hoof
I rise, the sky is as red as blood, “Toro! Toro! Listo!”

I drive the long blade in: Estoca completa, pero nunca puedo matar al Toro.



Spanish Bullfighting

Animal rights activists claim bullfighting is a cruel or barbarous blood sport, in which the bull suffers severe stress and a slow, torturous death. A number of animal rights or animal welfare activist groups such as Antitauromaquia and StopOurShame undertake anti-bullfighting actions in Spain and other countries.



Photo: “Ghosts of Seville” copyright_symbol_11 by Rayn Roberts.








The Dance of Death (1493) by Michael Wolgemut, from the Liber chronicarum by Hartmann Schedel