Tuesday, February 6, 2018

Tuesday Poem: "The United Fruit Co." by Pablo Neruda

When the trumpet sounded, everything
on earth was prepared

and Jehovah distributed the world

to Coca Cola Inc., Anaconda,

Ford Motors and other entities:

The Fruit Company Inc.

reserved the juiciest for itself,

the central coast of my land,

the sweet waist of America.

It re-baptized the lands

"Banana Republics"

and on the sleeping dead,

on the restless heroes

who'd conquered greatness,

liberty and flags,

it founded a comic opera:

it alienated free wills,

gave crowns of Caesar as gifts,

unsheathed jealousy, attracted

the dictatorship of the flies,

Trujillo flies, Tachos flies,

Carias flies, Martinez flies,

Ubico flies, flies soppy

with humble blood and marmelade,

drunken flies that buzz

around common graves,

circus flies, learned flies

adept at tyranny.

The Company disembarks

among the blood-thirsty flies,

brim-filling their boats that slide

with the coffee and fruit treasure

of our submerged lands like trays.

Meanwhile, along the sugared up

abysms of the ports,

indians fall over, buried

in the morning mist:

a body rolls, a thing

without a name, a fallen number,

a bunch of dead fruit

spills into the pile of rot.

by Pablo Neruda

For more information about the poet, Pablo Neruda, see:

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