William Ospina

The Geologist

Here was a sea a million years ago.

Man does not know this, but the stone remembers.

Break it: there is a crab in its guts,

all stone now, a magnificent shape

that refused to be dust.

Before the crag and the pebble, think

that perhaps there existed sorrowful beings,

blood and breathing lungs.

Between the blind rock

and the ecstatic tremolo of the salamander

there is only time.

— translated from the Spanish by Elaine Fowler Palencia, Michael Palencia-Roth