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To Diego Alejandro: Don´t beg me son to follow you


Don´t beg me son to follow you

hug me hard, if you wish

cry for the beautiful toy

that I cannot buy.

I will find a way to distract you

giving you a penny for candy.

Swing yourself in the suspended seat of my beard

Sing or laugh when you come see me at jail

make me happy with your tenderness

sweet as raw sugar loaf

but don´t beg me, my dear son to follow you.

Leave me your three-year-old impishness

tell me about your school

tell me about your deeds of quarrelsome boy games

speak to me softly in my ear

or yell to me you are big

and not small.

Grip in your tiny hands that guitar

of the prisoner who sings, whom you often imitate.

Lie on my legs

so I can tickle you

with “this little piggy went to market”…

but don´t beg me, my dear son to follow you.

Your father is a warrior in history

he fights the governments of the rich

and that is the reason why they bind him with thousand of bars on his chest.

Your father wishes for a garden filled with flowers

where all the children of the world

play with you without sorrows or miseries

and that is why he is arrested.

Your father wrote a book

in which he narrated the runaway from jail of his companions.

There he also told of the bold fights

of the irrepressible, uprising working people

and that is why their gazes were fenced in behind walls.

Come with me little one,

visiting time is almost over

give me a sweet kiss

sweet as a candy

and leave soon with her

who also wishes to take me with her

but don´t beg me my dear son to follow you.

Now, please understand well

what i am going to tell you

bodies can be locked away

but ideas, morale and dreams cannot.

Your father is not in jail

he walks around the prairies

as well as in rebellious roads.

It hurts me not to be able to accompany you

with your steps

but I will go away with you like everyday

i will keep by your side all the nights.

like this, my little one of my heart

i don´t suffer because of your absence, there are no absences

but don´t beg me, my dear son, to follow you.

11/26/76

Diego Salazar Luongo

Translator´s Note

¨this little piggy went to market¨: literally translated from text in Spanish would be “one can`t eat meat from here, or here, neither here, either here…until one tickles the child while supposed playing to find meat. In most anglospeaking countries, this game is known also as “this little piggy went to market to buy meat, he didn´t find any here, or here, or here, neither here and so on, until one tickles the child. It´s a common game parents play with their toddlers.