Landscapes


You can see them everywhere in Cuba.
Green or red or yellow, flaking off from the water
and the sun, true landscapes of these times
of war.
The wind tugs at the Coca-Cola signs.
The clocks courtesy of Canada Dry are stopped
at the old time.
The neon signs, broken, crackle and sputter in the rain.
Esso's is something like this
      S   O   S
and above there are some crude letters
reading PATRIA O MUERTE .


   Spanish; trans. Alastair Reid & Andrew Hurley


Herberto Padilla, Spanish, trans. Alastair Reid & Andrew Hurley, Legacies: Selected Poems, Farrar, Straus, and Giroux, 1984 .