Federico García Lorca: “Qasida of the Golden Girl”

Qasida of the Golden Girl

The golden girl
went bathing in the water,
and the water turned gold.

The algae and branches
in the shadows surprised her,
and the nightingale sang
for the little white girl.

The clear night came,
clouded with dull silver,
with bald mountains
beneath the browning breeze.

The wet girl
was white with water
and the water flared up.

Dawn came unblemished,
with a thousand cow-faces,
stiff and shrouded
with garlands of frost.

The girl in tears
bathed among the flares,
and the nightingale wept
with burning wings.

The golden girl
was a great white heron
and the water turned her gold.

Federico García Lorca

Translated from Spanish by Paul Weinfield, © 2015
Image by Patrick Palmer

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