translated, from the Spanish, by John Felstiner
The great urinator was yellow
and the stream that came down
was bronze-colored rain
on the domes of churches,
on the roofs of cars,
factories and cemetaries,
the populace and their gardens.
Who was it, where was it?
It was a density, think liquid
falling as from
and frightened passersby
with no umbrellas
gazed up skyward,
meanwhile avenues were flooding
and urine inexhaustible flowing
backing up drains, disintegrating
marble floors, carpets,
Nothing could be detected. Where
was this peril from?
What was going to happen to the world?
From on high the great urinator
was silent and urinated.
I am a pale and artless poet
not here to work out riddles
or recommend special umbrellas.
Hasta la vista! I greet you and go off
to a country where they won’t ask me questions.