Regal Beauty! Your veins are ferments
of my ancient nonbeing and of the black
champagne of my living!
Your hair is the unknown rootlet
of the tree of my vine.
Your hair is the strand of a splendid
mitre I lost!
Your body is the frothing tumult
of a crimsoned Jordan;
and it undulates, like a beatific lash
that humiliated the serpent of evil!
Your arms yield the thirst for the infinite,
with their chaste Pleiades of light,
as two white redemptive roads,
two dying births of a cross.
And they are formed in the unconquered blood
of my unattainable blue!
Your feet are two heraldic larks
eternally arriving from my yesterday!
Regal Beauty! Your feet are the two tears
I stifled in my descent from the Spirit,
on a Palm Sunday I entered the World,
now forever distant from Bethlehem!
César Vallejo, 1918
Translated by Valentino Gianuzzi and Michael Smith