Me Piden Versos

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Me Piden Versos (They Ask Me for Verses) reflects Dr. Jose Rizal’s longing for his native land, the Philippines. This poem was read in Circulo Hispano-Filipino on New Year’s Eve in Madrid and was written in 1882. He wrote this because he was actually asked for verses. He reminisced his childhood days. It can be seen in the poem how he missed the Philippines very much and how painful it is for him to leave his motherland.


Contents

Me Piden Versos

Jose P. Rizal

Piden que pulse la lira
Ha tiempo callada y rota:
Si ya no arranco una nota
Ni mi musa ya me inspira!
Balbuce fría y delira
Si la tortura mi mente;
Cuando ríe solo miente;
Como miente su lamento:
Y es que en mi triste aislamiento
Mi alma ni goza ni siente.


Hubo un tiempo ... y es verdad!
Pero ya aquel tiempo huyó,
En que vate me llamo
La indulgencia a la amistad.
Ahora de aquella edad
El recuerdo apenas resta
Como quedan de una fiesta
Los misteriosos sonidos
Que retienen los oídos
Del bullicio de la orquesta.


Soy planta apenas crecida
Arrancada del Oriente,
Donde es perfume el ambiente,
Donde es un sueño la vida:
Patria que jamás se olvida!
Enseñáronme a cantar
Las aves, con su trinar;
Con su rumor, las cascadas;
Y en sus playas dilatadas,
Los murmullos de la mar.


Mientras en la infancia mía
Pude a su sol sonreír,
Dentro de mi pecho hervir
Volcán de fuego sentía;
Vate fuí, porque quería
Con mis versos, con mi aliento,
Decir al rápido viento:
Vuela; su fama pregona!
Cántala de zona en zona;
De la tierra al firmamento!


La dejé! ... mis patrios lares.
Arboldespojado y seco!
Ya no repiten el eco
De mis pasados cantares
Yo crucé los vastos mares
Ansiando cambiar de suerte,
Y mi locura no advierte
Que en vez del bien que buscaba,
El mar conmigo surcaba
El espectro de la muerte.


Toda mis hermosa ilusión,
Amor, entusiasmo, anhelo,
Allá quedan bajo el cielo
De tan florida región:
No pidáis al corazón
Cantos de amor, que esta yerto;
Porque en medio del desierto
Donde discurro sin calma,
Siento que agoniza el alma
Y mi númen está muerto.


Translations

They Ask Me For Verses

Translated in English by Nick Joaquin


I
They bid me strike the lyre
so long now mute and broken,
but not a note can I waken
nor will my muse inspire!
She stammers coldly and babbles
when tortured by my mind;
she lies when she laughs and thrills
as she lies in her lamentation,
for in my sad isolation
my soul nor frolics nor feels.


II
There was a time, 'tis true,
but now that time has vanished
when indulgent love or friendship
called me a poet too.
Now of that time there lingers
hardly a memory,
as from a celebration
some mysterious refrain
that haunts the ears will remain
of the orchestra's actuation.


III
A scarce-grown plant I seem,
uprooted from the Orient,
where perfume is the atmosphere
and where life is a dream.
O land that is never forgotten!
And these have taught me to sing:
the birds with their melody,
the cataracts with their force
and, on the swollen shores,
the murmuring of the sea.


IV
While in my childhood days
I could smile upon her sunshine,
I felt in my bosom, seething,
a fierce volcano ablaze.
A poet was I, for I wanted
with my verses, with my breath,
to say to the swift wind: "Fly
and propagate her renown!
Praise her from zone to zone,
from the earth up to the sky!"


V
I left her! My native hearth,
a tree despoiled and shriveled,
no longer repeats the echo
of my old songs of mirth.
I sailed across the vast ocean,
craving to change my fate,
not noting, in my madness,
that, instead of the weal I sought,
the sea around me wrought
the spectre of death and sadness.


VI
The dreams of younger hours,
love, enthusiasm, desire,
have been left there under the skies
of that fair land of flowers.
Oh, do not ask of my heart
that languishes, songs of love!
For, as without peace I tread
this desert of no surprises,
I feel that my soul agonizes
and that my spirit is dead.

Pinatutula Ako

Filipino translation

Iyong hinihiling, lira ay tugtugin
bagaman sira na't laon nang naumid
ayaw nang tumipa ang nagtampong bagting
pati aking Musa ay nagtago narin.


Malungkot na nota ang nasnaw na himig
waring hinuhugot dusa at hinagpis
at ang alingawngaw ay umaaliwiw
sa sarili na ring puso at damdamin.
kaya nga't sa gitna niring aking hapis
yaring kalul'wa ko'y parang namamanhid.
Nagkapanahon nga ... kaipala'y, tunay
ang mga araw na matuling nagdaan
nang ako sa akong Musa'y napamahal
lagi na sa akin, ngiti'y nakalaan.


Ngunit marami nang lumipas na araw
sa aking damdamin alaala'y naiwan
katulad ng saya at kaligayahan
kapag dumaan na'y may hiwagang taglay
na mga awiting animo'y lumulutang
sa aking gunitang malabo, malamlam.
Katulad ko'y binhing binunot na tanim
sa nilagakan kong Silangang lupain
pawang lahat-lahat ay kagiliw-giliw
manirahan doo'y sayang walang maliw.


Ang bayan kong ito, na lubhang marikit
sa diwa't puso ko'y hindi mawawaglit
ibong malalaya, nangagsisiawit
mulang kabundukan, lagaslas ng tubig
ang halik ng dagat sa buhangin mandin
lahat ng ito'y, hindi magmamaliw.
Nang ako'y musmos pa'y aking natutuhang
masayang batiin ang sikat ng araw
habang sa diwa ko'y waring naglalatang
silakbo ng isang kumukulong bulkan.


Laon nang makata, kaya't ako nama'y
laging nagnanais na aking tawagan
sa diwa at tula, hanging nagduruyan:
"Ikalat mo lamang ang kanyang pangalan,
angking kabantugan ay ipaghiyawan
mataas, mababa'y, hayaang magpisan".


References

  • Guerrero, Leon Ma. The First Filipino. Manila: Guererro Publishing, 2003.
  • Zaide, Gregorio F. and Zaide, Sonia M. Jose Rizal: Life, Works and Writings of a Genius, Writer, Scientist and National Hero. Quezon City: All-Nations Publishing Co., Inc., 1999.
  • Romero, Ma. Corona S. Rizal and Philippine Nationalism. Manila: Neotek Publishing, 2009.
  • Romero, Ma. Corona S. Rizal and Development of National Conciousness. Manila: Neotek Publishing, 2009.
  • Lopez, J. A. Rizal Life, Works, and Writings of the Greatest Malayan: A Factual and Critical Approach with Medical Notes of Rizal. Quezon City: Hisgophil Publishing House, Inc., 2010.

External Links

  • The Life and Writings of Dr. José Rizal. [1] . (Accessed on June 5, 2011)
  • Reaksyon sa mga Tula ni Gat. Jose Rizal. [2] (Accessed on June 5, 2011)

Citation

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