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    DEFENSE OF JOY

to trini

To defend joy as a trench
To defend it from scandal and routine
From misery and the miserable
From temporary leaves
And definitive ones

To defend joy as a principle
To defend it from wonders and nightmares
From neutrals and neutrons
From sweet infamies
And grave diagnosis

To defend joy as a flag
To defend it from lightning and melancholy
From naïves and rogues
From rethorics and heart attacks
From endemics and academies

To defend joy as a destiny
To defend it from fire and firemen
From suicidal and homicidal
From holidays and stress
From the duty of being joyful

To defend joy as a certainty
To defend it from rust and dirt
From the famed patina of time
From fog and opportunism
From the pimps of laughter

To defend joy as a right
To defend it from god and winter
From capital letters and death
From surnames and pity
From chance
And also from joy.

autógrafo

Mario Benedetti
Translated by Val Blanc


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