Five Poems

Mapuche poet Liliana Ancalao. Photo: Morena Aimé Martínez.

Ngellípun üngümafiel ti colectivo*

Üngüm colectivolechi pu
ütrüfkünuye ñi señor
chongümelkünukilnge fachi püchü lewlew
ré antümu ingkánengel llengá wenté tranglíñ

matú küpápe ti colectivo
ta üngümün lle
wirkólkey trufkén tólmew ngatí
fey mülí tañi kupáfneafielmaye maychüleal
ka lüyükünumekeal chi rüpü mew
epúrume zuámfule wüme ti pu pilkómollfüñ
wüñówitrawnewün

ütrüfkünuye ñi señor
felén rupákinolpe
topákenolu reké ta iñché tañi tritráng namúnküyawal
ayüwmakenolu reké ta iñché tañi kümé piwkéngeal
kiñe ronóngelu reké
kiñe üngkó iñínorume chémnorume

meñólen küpákinolpe señor
kizú ñi züngú mütén inánekelleyngün ngatí
feymay namúnmayew rültrékawün
ka kiñe wifká langümüymanew ñi ayén
fey tutéwnarün trüylítuwe pülé yeniéngechi kullíñ

alüñmakinolpe señor fachántü ta wütrengí
fey may chi pu pewmá nga ám mew ta puwláy
ka fachi itró küñüwun mew ngeñíñmakünukeli
püchüñma élkünufili chi rüngán
fey pepí kafküngüchatukünufili
chi epéwün

*Traducción de Víctor Cifuentes, en La memoria iluminada: poesía mapuche contemporánea, edición de Jaime Luis Huenún, CEDMA Ediciones de la Diputación de Málaga, 2007.

 

prayer while waiting for the bus

father of the helpless
waiting for the bus
don’t let die this tiny flame
fueled by pure sun amidst frost

may the bus come soon
while the wait
piles ash upon my brow
and i work to brush it off and signal
and keep my eyes on the route
even if my veins doubt it
tugging

father of the helpless
don’t let it pass
as if i weren’t capable of walking barefoot
as if i weren’t prone to tenderness
as if i were a bottle cap
a post   no one   nothing

and father may it not arrive full
because they’ll have their way with it
the stomped toes and shoves
with a ticket they kill my smile
and i settle in   a beast headed to her butcher

may it not be delayed   father  today it’s cold
and dreams can’t reach the soul
on the brink of such risk   don’t blame me
if i abandon the trench for a second
and manage to curse
the dawn

 

Ti ramtun

fentekünun, kiñe ramtun inche reke
müchampramyu iñ namun
miawleaiñ
kiñe nüyün ñi trawau ti furi mew
nielay pu newen folil
fürenelay

wimn ñi kimnon
layaiñ kiñe epew mew ka epew
mangitripaiñ, pangküiñ ti pu ramtun
trawa ñi pu kaño mew
pu foro püle

miawiyaiñ
pu che inchiñ reke
pu kewan sechukünuleiñ
newenküleiñ pu pewma ñi mollfüñkug

leliwüaiñ teifunruka
ti mapa ñi pewma mew

 

question

she’ll have to resign herself to being a question
rolling her pants up at the ankle
to keep walking
with a seismic blast in her back
without foundation
or contemplation

she’ll have to get used to no answer
to dying in story after story
to being born kicking questions
from the shell of her skin
to her bones

and to go on
human no more
enduring fights
controling the earth’s pulse

seeing herself a ruins on the map of dreams

 

dios nüfi kiñe antü

dios nüfi kiñe antü
tufa chi fill mapu ñi antü
kütrüfi
kiñe papel reke

tufachi antü
wirüftuantü
chizküy
fine, funanko,
colüarkenko

wüni
tripaiñ tapül mew
tronopüllü engu

piwiñ  antüare mew
pepilngelayngun pu rayen

 

god grabs a day

god grabs a day from this world
and crumples it like paper

a deflowered day
drips semen
cloaca water
and red tide

then dawn breaks
we leave the leaf
with a wrinkled soul
and dry ourselves in the sun

like impossible flowers

 

kiñe wentru

üwemapu ñi rangiantü

pu kura dulli kiñe wentru

kura wentepramuy kura
ültrey wekuñ püle

ürkütuy
rekülkünuwi ti wentru ñi furi
tufachi kuzaw zeumalayay
chumnkaonorume

dios fülfi ti wentru ñi tol
ti wenu mew

 

man

midday desert sun

a man is choosing stones

lays stone upon stone
to raise a menhir

he rests
leans his back
to his unfinished work

god touches the man’s brow with sky

 

epu llafinge ñi furi mew

epu llafinge ñi furi mew
trepeleiñ
tufachi pewma mew
kiñe füu ñi pelo
llüfkey

upetun
trekawan ka pefiñ ñi pu llowzungun

kimniekan ñi pepi üpütun pewma mew
üpütun senchu
trafopüraprawe ka ñi alüpran ñüküfküley
fiñmangelukewentru

chem iñchengefun?
tunté fanelai iñche ñi namun
lefüfun senchu ti pun
mulefun anka wenu mew?
chem zungu yefun?
chem uyülonkon lanüeneu iñche ñi llikakenge?
chem ayetuchen ügürufi iñche ñi falke
ka aftükueneu
trepelen ka üpül mew?
kiñe che amulpungey trafkintu mew?
kiñe che azueyew
iñche ñi wicharümüpü üküm engu?

kimn
kimlafun ñi akun
winteyüy ñi likmüpün
fanelay, chiwai mew
kimn
wülngen zungu ñi pepipepiltun
feyentuan
pepian katarumefin llafinge    
ñi müpün mew

ka wewawn
ti wünn ti mapu mew
epu allfen engu
iñche ñi furi mew

 

behind my eyelids

behind my eyelids a detained vigil waits
in the dream a cord of light sparkles
and i think
the answers are but a step away

i recall how in dreams
i can fly
and i fly
over broken stairs   silent heights
and men who spy

what was i?
what delicate feet did i have
that ran across the body of nightair?
what message did i carry?
what dizziness undid my eyefear?
what caustic taunt touched my shoulder
and left me awake on the other shore?
was someone sent in my place?
did someone mend my wings slashed by silence?

i know
i didn’t know how to reach the destination
and that my airy white flight came apart in the mist
and that i’m condemned with each dream
to repeat the attempt

until i fervent
in flight
can break through the eyelids’ barrier
and seize
a dawning world
with two scars on my back

Translated via the Spanish by Seth Michelson

Read more multilingual poems by Liliana Ancalao in World Literature Today.

 

Languages

LALT No. 5
Number 5

LALT No. 5 features powerful literary voices from across Latin America, including dossiers of essential writers Sergio Pitol and Victoria de Stefano, a special selection of Latin American chronicles curated by Felipe Restrepo Pombo, and a moving collection of trilingual poems by Mapuche poet Liliana Ancalao.

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