Cielito Lindo

“Canta y no llores” ~ “Cielito lindo”

When she comes across these lines in a book
of poetry— “In proportion to what is taken,
what is given multiplies,” the Buddha wonders:

if this is so, is the reverse also true?
Is this what spooked the Greeks into espousing
the virtue of moderation, of keeping to

the middle way: of practicing, like Sophrosyne,
a life of self-control, restraint, temperance,
and discretion? Not much wine, not much song:

sobriety instead of singing along in the heat
at the top of your lungs with the mariachi band
strolling from table to table— Ay ay ay ay,

canta y no llores. What they mean is the arrow
has struck its target; Pandora’s box is open,
and every calamity is loose in the world.

There’s nothing you can do with such a wound
except sing. Yes, why not sing? the sky is brilliant,
is really more than lovely— Don’t cry.


In response to Via Negativa: Teaching the catbird to sing.

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