Tag Archives: Cesar Verrier


A poem from Mexican poet Claudia Sánchez

June 8, 2024

In the middle of the last decade, I made three trips to Mexico to read my poetry at several different cities and venues. These trips were an extension of the interest that Jose Rico and Robin Myers had in my poetry, which resulted in a a full-length, bilingual edition of my poems being published by Bonobos Editors. This publication and these readings remain the most gratifying moment of my literary journey.

On the third trip, I visited a classroom full of young poets and talked with them for a couple of hours. One of them has stayed in touch with me and recently sent me some poems, which I have asked a poet friend from Argentina to translate.

La densidad del aire

El polvo que nadie sacude,
ese que se queda en las casas abandonadas,
un punto en los pulmones que poco a poco se hace piedra,
partículas secas que flotan en el aire.

Habrá que preguntar a Medusa,
la más hermosa de las gorgonas,
recluida con su manzana dorada,
cuándo nos convertiremos en piedra,
en sombras que el viento no se llevará,
cuándo estaremos realmente muertas.


The density of the air

The dust that nobody shakes,
the type that stays in abandoned houses,
a spot in the lungs that little by little becomes a stone,
dry particles that float in the air.

We should ask Medusa,
the most beautiful of the gorgons,
secluded with her golden apple,
when we will turn into stone,
into shadows that the wind will not carry away,
when we will really be dead.

(Translated by Cesar Verrier)


If Claudia Sánchez;s poem were untitled, much of the power of the ending would be lost, for it is only the “density” of the air that allows our lives have a sculpted shadow of absence that cannot be carried away, but remains on the pedestal of other’s sorrow, effaced yet utterly precise in its profile.