Ode to Friday: Lorca

Garcia Lorca, Frederico, Untitled, L

Tree, tree
dry and green.

The girl with the pretty face
is out picking olives.
The wind, playboy of towers,
grabs her around the waist.
Four riders passed by
on Andalusian ponies,
with blue and green jackets
and big, dark capes.
“Come to Cordoba, muchacha.”

The girl won’t listen to them.
Three young bullfighters passed,
slender in the waist,
with jackets the colour of oranges
and swords of ancient silver.
“Come to Sevilla, muchacha.”
The girl won’t listen to them.
When the afternoon had turned
dark brown, with scattered light,
a young man passed by, wearing
roses and myrtle of the moon.
“Come to Granada, muchacha.”
And the girl won’t listen to him.
The girl with the pretty face
keeps on picking olives
with the grey arm of the wind
wrapped around her waist.
Tree, tree
dry and green.


Arbolé, Arbolé by Federico García Lorca (Spanish, 1898-1936), translated by William Logan, untitled drawing by Lorca


5 thoughts on “Ode to Friday: Lorca

    • I’d plump for Seville myself ;)

      What appeals to me is how she declines the various offers of “other places” and affirms that here, now, where she is, is where the action is. I also like the way the poem works by colour. She stays with the grey wind and green tree, declines the orange and silver.


  1. For me it is beautiful and like all things abstract, I can but appreciate the generosity of the poet setting the scene that allows us to see a what we personally feel. That is the ultimate beauty of like poems or paintings. This is a particularly beautiful and profound poem, expressing two extremes, of on the one hand cultivating life, harvesting the olive, versus on the other the taking of life in the killing of the bull. The temptation of the handsome young Toreadors, and the resisting strength of the beautiful young maiden whose built in Spanish mother’s instinct, chooses nurturing life over the traditional bull fighting excitement that ultimately leads to death.

    A lovely choice of poetry…thank you for that Narelle. JJ


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