Startling Poetry: Ballad of the Moon

Ballad of the Moon by Federico Garcia Lorca

The moon came to the forge
wearing a bustle of Spikenards.
The boy is looking at her.
The boy is looking hard.
In the troubled air,
the wind moves her arms,
showing lewd and pure,
her hard, tin breasts.
“Run, moon, moon, moon.
If the gypsies came,
they would make of your heart
necklaces and white rings.”
“Child, let me dance.
When the gypsies come,
they will find you on the anvil
with your little eyes shut tight.”
“Run, moon moon moon.
I can hear their horses.
Child, let me be, don’t walk
on my starchy white.”

The rider was drawing closer
playing the drum of the plain.
In the forge the child
has his eyes shut tight.
Bronze and dream, the gypsies
cross the olive grove.
Their heads held high,
their eyes half open.

Ay how the nightjar sings!
How it sings in the tree!
The moon goes through the sky
with a child in her hand.

In the forge the gypsies
wept and cried aloud.
The air is watching, watching.
The air watched all night long.

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