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To A Very Young Lady, Separated

In the year since you
married, sweet beautiful breasts,
you have found the fruits
of your marriage bitter.

And so one fine morning
like an schoolgirl
you impatiently chose
sweet liberty.

Now you are seen in the bars
decked out like some privateer,
six men to the side,
Isabel, Isabel child.

Up on a stool, radiant,
erect, your hair on the fly
in your own private wind,
commander over the gaiety.

Who wouldn’t you have fallen for
by the end of the day
for the love of falling in love!
They told me everything.

Haven’t you learned yet, innocent child,
that beautiful feelings
told in the third person
come out ugly stories?

Though giving yourself sincerely
they don’t understand.
Isabel be careful girl.

For we are in Spain;
for two things are the same:
your sweethearts’ foolishness
your husband’s idiocy.


Jaime Gil De Biedma
from #Moralidades#
translation by Will Kirkland