Gabriela Mistral: “Those Who Will Not Dance”

Those Who Will Not Dance

An invalid girl said:
“How shall I dance?”
Dance with your heart,
we told her.

Then the river gorge said:
“How shall I sing?”
Sing with your heart,
we told her.

Then the poor dead thistle said:
“How shall I dance?”
Let the wind lift your heart,
we told him.

Then God spoke from above:
“How shall I come down from the blue?”
Dance for us in the light,
we told him.

All the valley is dancing
in a circle beneath the sun,
And the hearts of those who will not join
have already returned to soil.

Gabriela Mistral

Translated from Spanish by Paul Weinfield, © 2014
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