Seventy five years ago (19th August 1936) the poet, Federico Garcia Lorca was shot dead by his captors in a country lane near Viznar above Granada. Here is a poem by his friend Antonio Machado which I have translated.
I: The Crime
One saw him walking between the rifles,
down a long road
out to indifferent fields
still lit by early stars.
They killed Federico
when the dawn broke.
The firing squad
dared not look into his face.
They all closed their eyes,
said: “Nor will God save you!”
Federico fell dying
–blood on his brow, lead in his guts –
…To think the crime should have been in Granada.
– poor Granada! – in his Granada…
II: Death and the Poet
He was seen walking only with Her,
unafraid of her scythe.
– The sun now on tower after tower, hammers
on anvils – anvil on anvil, of the forges.
Federico was speaking
flattering Death. She listened.
“Because yesterday in my verse, friend,
the clap of your dry palms sounded,
you gave ice to my song, your silver
scythe’s edge to my tragedy,
I’ll sing to you of your wasted flesh,
your empty eyes,
your hair the wind stirs,
the red lips where you were kissed…
Now as ever, gypsy, my death,
how good to be alone with you,
in this breeze of Granada, my Granada!”
He was seen walking…
a statue of stone and dreams in the Alhambra,
for the poet,
over a fountain where water weeps
and saying, eternally:
the crime was in Granada, in his Granada!