Tuesday Poem

…. I have walked along many roads,
and opened paths through brush,
I have sailed over a hundred seas
and tied up on a hundred shores.

…. Everywhere I’ve gone I’ve seen
excursions of sadness,
angry and melancholy
drunkards with black shadows,

…. and academics in offstage clothes
who watch, say nothing, and think
the know, because they do not drink wine
in the ordinary bars.

…. Evil men who walk around
polluting the earth . . .

…. And everywhere I’ve been I’ve seen
men who dance and play,
when they can, and work
the few inches of ground they have.

…. If they turn up somewhere,
they never ask where they are.
When they take trips, they ride
on the back of old mules.

…. They don’t know how to hurry,
not even on holidays.
They drink wine, if there is some,
if not, cool water.

…. These men are the good ones,
who love, work, walk and dream.
And on a day no different from the rest
they lie down beneath the earth.

by Antonio Machado
from Times Alone
Wesleyan University Press