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Each day I pray this prayer
  upon arising:
Oh God,
torment me no more
tell me what they mean
these horrors that surround me
Surrounded am I by monsters
that mutely question me,
the same, the same as I interogate them.
That maybe they question you,
just as I ,in vain, perturb
the silence of your unvarying night
with my heartrending interogation.
Under the stars half light
and under the terrible darkness of the solar light
enemy eyes espy me,
grotesque forms that watch me
wounding colors snares they set for me
They are monsters!
I am surrounded by monsters!
They don't devour me
They devour my longed for repose.
they make of me an anguish that distends
upon itself
they make me man,
monster amongst monsters.
No, none so horrible
as this frantic Damaso
as this yellow centipede that made you clamour
with all his maddened tentacles,
as this immediate beast
smelted into flowing anguish
no, none so monstruous
as this pest that bellows at you,
as that heartrending incognito
that now repremands you with articulated moans
that now says to you
Oh God,
torment me no more,
tell me what they mean
these monsters that surround me
and this intimate horror that gibbers at you in the night.


Dámaso Alonso, 1944
Translation by Charles Burnham

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audio Voice: Dámaso Alonso
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