Federico García Lorca

(5 June 1898 – 19 August 1936 / Fuente Vaqueros)

Before The Dawn - Poem by Federico García Lorca

But like love
the archers
are blind

Upon the green night,
the piercing saetas
leave traces of warm

The keel of the moon
breaks through purple clouds
and their quivers
fill with dew.

Ay, but like love
the archers
are blind!

Comments about Before The Dawn by Federico García Lorca

  • (4/21/2016 11:19:00 PM)

    A beautifully envisioned Superb poem. Thanks for sharing it here. (Report) Reply

    1 person liked.
    0 person did not like.
  • (4/21/2016 10:44:00 PM)

    You should read it in Spanish if you could.
    There all the beauty of poetry that ever was comes alive and the romance of Spain and its beautifully poetic language with its rhythm and sonority become unforgettable forever. Lorca was one of the greatest Spanish poets of the 20th century.
    His verses, images and metaphors, especially those that have to do with Andalusian Southern Spain are unequaled in the whole of Spanish literature. Also a mysterious magical Moon is very present, taking the form
    of an actual being with presence and feelings. and mystery.
    Lorca oncesaid, [Only mystery, makes us live, only mystery] And there certainly is a Magical Mystery in his never dying poetry
    . Lorca died very young, he was 36, assassinated during the Spanish civil war.
    What an Irreparable crime!
    (Report) Reply

  • Anil Kumar Panda (4/21/2016 10:25:00 PM)

    A beauty! ! Thanks for sharing. (Report) Reply

  • Moira Cameron (4/21/2016 9:54:00 PM)

    I love the verse about the moon; it sparked such a wonderful image and feeling. (Report) Reply

  • Susan Williams (4/21/2016 8:27:00 PM)

    Thank you Savita for looking up Saeta and sharing it with us. For me, I was caught up with this image and it is still sailing along in my head and that is a sign of great writing- - - - - - ]
    The keel of the moon
    breaks through purple clouds
    (Report) Reply

  • Geeta Radhakrishna Menon (4/21/2016 12:27:00 PM)

    Ay, but like love
    the archers
    are blind!
    A subtle poem of great depth!
    (Report) Reply

  • Rajnish Manga (4/21/2016 9:24:00 AM)

    There is something amazing in the narrative as well as in the portrayal of nature. Loved reading it. (Report) Reply

  • Kenneth Maswabi (4/21/2016 9:12:00 AM)

    A beautiful poem poem indeed. Thank you very much. (Report) Reply

  • Savita Tyagi (4/21/2016 7:57:00 AM)

    I looked up Saeta and it refers to Spanish religious song. It invokes great passion. With this definition leaving traces of warmth upon Lily or atmosphere makes sense and connects it with power of love. Hate also invokes same emotions signified by word archer. This is my intake. The poem is beautiful and a pleasure to read. (Report) Reply

  • (4/21/2016 6:57:00 AM)

    ........amazing...beauty is in the eye of the beholder, but love is in the heart ★ (Report) Reply

  • Soul Watcher (4/21/2016 3:44:00 AM)

    short but profound poem.
    Thanks for sharing
    (Report) Reply

  • Edward Kofi Louis (4/21/2016 2:03:00 AM)

    Upon the green night! Thanks for sharing this poem with us. (Report) Reply

  • Kim Barney (4/21/2016 1:18:00 AM)

    Garcia Lorca had a unique way with words.
    Upon the green night,
    the piercing saetas
    leave traces of warm
    A saeta is a dart or an arrow, thus the connection to the archers. I'm still trying to figure out how the arrows could leave traces of warm lily...
    I also wonder why the translator left the Spanish word saeta in the poem and didn't just translate it.
    I think that when a poem comes from a foreign language, as this one does, Poem Hunter should tell us who the translator was, so that we can give them the credit (or the blame) .
    (Report) Reply

    (4/21/2016 10:55:00 PM)

    Kim, lirio caliente is lorca's image in this poem that is more of a feeling than an image, lirio cliente, the pure beauty of the flower with the warmth of life and deep feeling.
    Creo, en poesia nunca se sabe con certitud

  • Dawn Fuzan (5/6/2014 10:02:00 AM)

    fantastic poem i enjoyed it a lot (Report) Reply

  • Brian Jani (5/3/2014 2:55:00 AM)

    I enjoyed reading this poem, brave! (Report) Reply

Read all 16 comments »

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Read poems about / on: purple, moon, green, night, love

Poem Submitted: Friday, January 3, 2003

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