POEM Malú Urriola (translated by Richard Gwyn)

NWR Issue 112

From Bitch’s Daughter

Outside a red light was swinging and the sign fell apart like the sign of
a deadbeat nightclub, as if we were crashing into death, the man took
out a small key. Dogs were barking and the man drove us to a hovel we
would never see again, we switched the TV on and lit up a few spliffs,
later I smoked one cigarette after another and I watched you speaking,
and we spoke about the hovel, about the man’s lameness, about our own
lameness, of the night as it hurried along with a strange urgency, the
clouds were passing swiftly, bluish, violet, like life’s blows, as if we were
about to knock against life, the man brought two coffees that turned
cold on the bedside table, in a corner of the room were the remains of
a party that others left behind, what I’d give for a drink, I said to you,
you came over to me slowly, unlike the clouds, unlike the night that
hurried along swiftly, unlike the dogs that wouldn’t stop barking, once
in a while they quietened down, and they quietened down until a car’s
headlamps slammed against the window panes and lit up the hovel
allowing your body to be made visible and then the shadows came that
covered you, far from home, so far from home and on the radio with
dying batteries Janis sang bye bye baby.

María de la Luz Urriola González, known as Malú Urriola, is a Chilean dramatist and poet. She was born in Santiago in 1967. Her work has appeared in anthologies including 16 poetas chilenos (Santiago: Ediciones Cámara Chile, 1987). She participated with other Latin American writers in the Guía del Nuevo Siglo, edited by Julio Ortega (Editorial de la Universidad de Puerto Rico, 1998). In 2004 she received the Premio Mejores Obras Editadas del Consejo Nacional del libro and the Premio Municpal de Poesía for the book Nada (Santiago: LOM, 2003). In 2006 she won the Premio Pablo Neruda. In 2009 she was awarded a Guggenheim fellowship.

Richard Gwyn is Professor of Creative Writing at Cardiff University. He is a poet, novelist and translator. These poems are previews of his forthcoming anthology of ninety-seven contemporary Spanish poets of Latin American, published by Seren this October.


previous poem: The House in Tigre
next poem: Fox Blues


A brief note on copyright:all authors have given permission for their work to appear online on New Welsh Review's website. Copyright remains with the author. If you wish to reproduce part or all of any article then the permission of the author must be sought, and the author and New Welsh Review credited accordingly.

Contact us:Registered Office PO Box 170, Aberystwyth, Ceredigion, SY23 1WZ - Telephone 00 (44) 1970 628410 admin@newwelshreview.com
© New Welsh Review Ltd, all rights reserved - Registered in England and Wales - Registered number: 02493828
Website design: mach2media and mopublications      Website development: Technoleg Taliesin Cyf.