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AQ Feature

El Bote/The Dump

A poem by Cuban poet Rito Ramón Aroche, translated by Kristin Dykstra.
STR/AFP/GETTY

This article is part of AQ's debut culture supplement, Cultura. To see the rest of the issue, click here


El Bote

¿El detritus algo importa?

¿Tampoco la luminosidad por estos páramos? Donde
se instalarían las depuraciones. Y polvo

en el camino, o fango. ¿Hurgan los moradores?

El humo desasido. Moscas. Porque se ha visto

revolotear al ave carroñera, y perros, vagar por estos días,
¿También hurgan los perros? Oye, aquí voltean
tractores y camiones — grumos. ¿Los desperdicios?
Que no llegue a la noche. Aquí se habita. De aquí...
bueno. Y sacos de botellas. Latas. ¿Viven?
El mundo es reciclable, oh Dios. ¿El mundo que creaste?


The Dump

Does detritus matter somehow?

Not the luminosity in these wastelands either? Where
disposal systems would be installed. And dust

on the road, or sludge. Do inhabitants dig around?

Smoke dissolving. Flies. Because the vulture

has been seen to circle, dogs to wander, through these days.
Do the dogs dig around too? Listen, tractors and trucks
cycle here for drop-offs — mounds. The refuse?

Without this I won’t make it. Dwelling here. From here...
well. And bags full of bottles. Cans. A living?

Lord, the world is recyclable. The world that you created?

--

Rito Ramón Aroche is a Cuban poet (b. 1961)

Translated by Kristin Dykstra

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Any opinions expressed in this piece do not necessarily reflect those of Americas Quarterly or its publishers.
Tags: Cultura, Cuba

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