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Ernesto Cardenal

Ernesto Cardenal was a Catholic priest and Marxist revolutionary from Nicaragua. He was the author of more than thirty-five books, including The Origin of Species and Other Poems (Texas Tech University Press, 2011), Pluriverse: New and Selected Poems (New Directions, 2009), and Cosmic Canticle (Curbstone Books, 2002). His honors include the French Legion of Honor, the Pablo Neruda Prize for Poetry, and the Reina Sofia Prize for Latin American Poetry. He lived in Managua, Nicaragua, and died on March 1, 2020. 

By This Poet


Vision from the Blue Plane-Window

In the round little window, everything is blue,
land bluish, blue-green, blue
				(and sky)
	everything is blue
blue lakes and lagoons
			blue volcanoes
while farther off the land looks bluer
	blue islands in a blue lake.
This is the face of the land liberated.
And where all the people fought, I think:
						for love!
To live without the hatred
				of exploitation.
To love one another in a beautiful land
so beautiful, not only in itself
			but because of the people in it,
above all because of the people in it.
That's why God gave us this beautiful land
for the society in it.
And in all those blue places they fought, suffered
			for a society of love
				here in this land.

One patch of blue looks more intense...
And I thought I was seeing the sites of all the battles there,
and of all the deaths,
behind that small, round windowpane
					all the shades of blue.