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Tengo Excerpt

Tengo Excerpt

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Published by Steven Woodruff
This is an excerpted fair use translation from Guillen's collection Palma Sola. I have spent time in Camaguey
and visited Guillen's former residence there which is now a cultural center and busy most days with concerts and other cultural activities. During my trips to Cuba I have collected some photos and books of Guillen from various fairs and open air book markets. I plan to write a longer piece which will weave together some of his poetry, photos and my experiences related to this poem. Stay tuned.
This is an excerpted fair use translation from Guillen's collection Palma Sola. I have spent time in Camaguey
and visited Guillen's former residence there which is now a cultural center and busy most days with concerts and other cultural activities. During my trips to Cuba I have collected some photos and books of Guillen from various fairs and open air book markets. I plan to write a longer piece which will weave together some of his poetry, photos and my experiences related to this poem. Stay tuned.

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Published by: Steven Woodruff on Jan 06, 2011
Copyright:Traditional Copyright: All rights reserved

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05/12/2014

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I Have
When I see myself, touch myself me, Juan with Nothing only yesterday,and today, Juan with Everything,and today with everything,turning my head, looking,see myself and touch myself and I ask how has this come to be.I have, let’s seeI have the pleasure of walking through my homeland,master of all there is in it,looking, close up at what beforeI didn’t have nor could have.I can say zafra,I can say mountain,I can say city,and armyalready mine forever and yours, ours,a broad brillianceof beam, star, bloom.I have, let’s see,I have the pleasure of goingme, farmer, worker, a simple person,I have the pleasure of going( here’s an example)to a bank and speaking with the manager not in English,not with sir,only saying to him
compañero
like we say Spanish.I have, let’s see being black no one detaining meat the door of a dance hall or a bar.or even in the lobby of a hotelshouting at me that there isn’t a room,a little room nor a huge room,a tiny room where I might rest.I have, let’s see,no rural policethat can grab me, lock me in a jail,nor uproot me and throw me off my landin the middle of the highway.I have as I have the land, the sea,no club,no high life,no tennis and no yacht,Just beach on beach, and wave on wave,huge, blue, open democratic:finally, the sea.

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