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Romance Sonámbulo Analysis



Author: poem of Federico García Lorca Type: poem Views: 0

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English Translation





Green, how I want you green.

Green wind. Green branches.

The ship out on the sea

and the horse on the mountain.

With the shade around her waist

she dreams on her balcony,

green flesh, her hair green,

with eyes of cold silver.

Green, how I want you green.

Under the gypsy moon,

all things are watching her

and she cannot see them.



Green, how I want you green.

Big hoarfrost stars

come with the fish of shadow

that opens the road of dawn.

The fig tree rubs its wind

with the sandpaper of its branches,

and the forest, cunning cat,

bristles its brittle fibers.

But who will come? And from where?

She is still on her balcony

green flesh, her hair green,

dreaming in the bitter sea.



--My friend, I want to trade

my horse for her house,

my saddle for her mirror,

my knife for her blanket.

My friend, I come bleeding

from the gates of Cabra.

--If it were possible, my boy,

I'd help you fix that trade.

But now I am not I,

nor is my house now my house.

--My friend, I want to die

decently in my bed.

Of iron, if that's possible,

with blankets of fine chambray.

Don't you see the wound I have

from my chest up to my throat?

--Your white shirt has grown

thirsy dark brown roses.

Your blood oozes and flees a

round the corners of your sash.

But now I am not I,

nor is my house now my house.

--Let me climb up, at least,

up to the high balconies;

Let me climb up! Let me,

up to the green balconies.

Railings of the moon

through which the water rumbles.



Now the two friends climb up,

up to the high balconies.

Leaving a trail of blood.

Leaving a trail of teardrops.

Tin bell vines

were trembling on the roofs.

A thousand crystal tambourines

struck at the dawn light.



Green, how I want you green,

green wind, green branches.

The two friends climbed up.

The stiff wind left

in their mouths, a strange taste

of bile, of mint, and of basil

My friend, where is she--tell me--

where is your bitter girl?

How many times she waited for you!

How many times would she wait for you,

cool face, black hair,

on this green balcony!

Over the mouth of the cistern

the gypsy girl was swinging,

green flesh, her hair green,

with eyes of cold silver.

An icicle of moon

holds her up above the water.

The night became intimate

like a little plaza.

Drunken "Guardias Civiles"

were pounding on the door.

Green, how I want you green.

Green wind. Green branches.

The ship out on the sea.

And the horse on the mountain.





Translated by William Logan





Original Spanish



    Verde que te quiero verde.

Verde viento.  Verdes ramas.

El barco sobre la mar

y el caballo en la montaña.

Con la sombra en la cintura

ella sueña en sus baranda,

verde carne, pelo verde,

con ojos de fría plata.

Verde que te quiero verde.

Bajo la luna gitana,

las cosas la están mirando

y ella no puede mirarlas.



   Verde que te quiero verde.

Grandes estrellas de escarcha,

vienen con el pez de sombra

que abre el camino del alba.

La higuera frota su viento

con la lija de sus ramas,

y el monte, gato garduño,

eriza sus pitas agrias.

¿Pero quién vendrá?  ¿Y por dónde...?

Ella sigue en su baranda,

verde carne, pelo verde,

soñando en la mar amarga.



   Compadre, quiero cambiar

mi caballo por su casa,

mi montura por su espejo,

mi cuchillo por su manta.

Compadre, vengo sangrando,

desde los puertos de Cabra.

Si yo pudiera, mocito,

este trato se cerraba.

Pero yo ya no soy yo,

Ni mi casa es ya mi casa.

Compadre, quiero morir

decentemente en mi cama.

De acero, si puede ser,

con las sábanas de holanda.

¿No ves la herida que tengo

desde el pecho a la garganta?

Trescientas rosas morenas

lleva tu pechera blanca.

Tu sangre rezuma y huele

alrededor de tu faja.

Pero yo ya no soy yo.

Ni mi casa es ya mi casa.

Dejadme subir al menos

hasta las altas barandas,

¡dejadme subir!, dejadme

hasta las verdes barandas.

Barandales de la luna

por donde retumba el agua.



   Ya suben los dos compadres

hacia las altas barandas.

Dejando un rastro de sangre.

Dejando un rastro de lágrimas.

Temblaban en los tejados

farolillos de hojalata.

Mil panderos de cristal,

herían la madrugada.



  Verde que te quiero verde,

verde viento, verdes ramas.

Los dos compadres subieron.

El largo viento, dejaba

en la boca un raro gusto

de hiel, de menta y de albahaca.

¡Compadre!  ¿Dónde está, dime?

¿Dónde está tu niña amarga?

¡Cuántas veces te esperó!

¡Cuántas veces te esperara,

cara fresca, negro pelo,

en esta verde baranda!



   Sobre el rostro del aljibe

se mecía la gitana.

Verde carne, pelo verde,

con ojos de fría plata.

Un carábano de luna

la sostiene sobre el agua.

La noche se puso íntima

como una pequeña plaza.

Guardias civiles borrachos

en la puerta golpeaban.






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||| Analysis | Critique | Overview Below |||

.: :.

I still can't well got the point. Is there a soilder or no? Where can we see from the poem that there were Guardias civiles?

| Posted on 2014-12-27 | by a guest


.: :.

"An icicle of moon/holds her up above the water" means that she's hung herself and the moonlight is shining on her dead body hanging over the water.

| Posted on 2014-09-28 | by a guest


.: :.

La única cosa que puedo añadir es que posiblemente la mujer tuvo que morir porque ella quería que era la única manera evitar sus dificultades. Ella se estaba enfermando y en un estado de tristeza porque no pensaba que su amor regresará, y por eso, decidió matar a su mismo para escapar su vida de esperar y de tragedía. Ella es muy como Adela en \"La Casa de Bernarda Alma\" que ta,bién fue escrito por Lorca.

| Posted on 2012-04-26 | by a guest


.: :.

i can\'t understand some words, can you give some nice interpretation.

| Posted on 2012-02-19 | by a guest


.: :.

Que tristeza con la gran depresion de la guerra, el dolor y la angustia de tanta violencia y muerte, una mujer sola sin tener a donde ir se canzo de esperar por su amante que era soldado, y Lorca nos la describe verde y friamente la tragedia de su muerte. Que pena no!

| Posted on 2011-11-06 | by a guest


.: :.

her green skin means she is dead. It is an example of irony. Green represents life and nature. He wants her green because he wants her alive. However her skin is turning \"green\" because she is decomposing, she committed suicide

| Posted on 2011-05-11 | by a guest


.: :.

maybe its just about this strange green girl guys...

| Posted on 2011-02-20 | by a guest


.: :.

As far as Lorca is concerned, green is associated with sex. My AP Spanish Literature teacher says this, and so it ought to be true. The significance of green in the poem, then, is that it reveals the nature of the relationship between the soldier and the girl and what the soldier is expecting on being reunited with his love. This, in a sense, makes the reality of her death all the more tragic. He arrived too late, and she drowned herself in the big water barrel (Andalucia is very hot and dry, so many people had/have large barrels to collect rainwater). It can be interpreted that she drowned herself due to her thirst for her lover, which was not satisfied in time. That\'s decent analysis.

| Posted on 2010-10-20 | by a guest


.: :.

hay una isotopia del color verde. \"verde viento, verdes ramas.\" representa la muerte y tambien la naturaleza, y quizas la soledad. es un romance triste, y bastante desesperada.

| Posted on 2010-10-13 | by a guest


.: :.

Read some theory on \"simbolismo lorquiano\" to understand what HE meant while writing it.
Whatever feelings the color \"green\" induce in you constitute your personal interpretation of the poem.

| Posted on 2010-10-03 | by a guest


.: :.

green is a symbol of the gypsies, as lorca believed that gypsies had the colours of an olive tree on their body

| Posted on 2010-08-02 | by a guest


.: :.

possibly green is the symbol of being "happy and alive" and i think when he says that "with eyes of cold silver" refers to her loneliness and grief. when everything can see her but her grief dont allow her to see(figuartive not literal meaning of " to see")

| Posted on 2010-07-08 | by a guest


.: :.

Lorca writes with a lot of ambiguity here. I'm a romanticist, so i'd like to believe that in the poem, a soldier comes to the door of a man's house (the man being his lover's father) and expresses his yearning to settle down, live peacefully, and die peacefully. When he finally figures out that his lover could hold on no longer and has passed on, he wants to join her as well. When he ascends the balcony (a symbol of death), he sees that she was still alive (barely). Lorca tells us that "the moon held her head just above the water". He realizes this too late and dies to the sounds of the war and the past that he wanted so desperately to get away from. "Romanceros" tend to be tragic, and this one is especially because Lorca demonstrates the pain of separation and the imminence and inescapability of death (the fact that we cannot choose when or how it comes about). THe soldier died because of his wounds but also because of his loneliness and yearning for his lover.

| Posted on 2010-02-01 | by a guest


.: :.

The poem signifies the pain of separacion , aside of being wounded , the man is mourning for he cant be with his beloved. And in my opinion she is only an image for everyone to look at but nothing but that, for Lorca states "all things are watching her and she cannot see them" so she is not actualy there. im not sure about this theory , but it could be considerd.

| Posted on 2010-01-25 | by a guest


.: :.

The poem was written in the 1920s. Any reference to Franco or the war is baseless.
The poem is a beautiful, albeit obscure version of Romeo and Juliet in a Spanish setting.

| Posted on 2009-09-16 | by a guest


.: :.

The story of two drunken guards that speak like two surrealist poets and by denying individual responsibility and reality through a very creative use of language end up knocking at a girl's door and killing her. A criticism of the language of the avantgarde that wanted to deny the world and create a new reality by using the methaphor. And ended up becoming the expression of individualism and elitism, the ideals of the reactionary forces that led to Franco's disctatorship.

| Posted on 2009-06-03 | by a guest


.: :.

Although everything posted above here can find basis in the poem, so can a lot of random interpretations because of the surrealist and ambiguous nature of it. Ultimately there is no correct interpretation as Lorca himself claimed to not be able to pin down exactly what is 'happening' in the storyline. The colour green represents both life and verility in the sexual desire of the girl as well as the putrefaction involved in her possible death. The feminine and masculine are kept in separate plains within the poem so that neither can ever meet, causing a necessary distance: ultimately they exist in different worlds: the feminine in the creative and surrealist and the masculine in the physical and narrative. It may be suggested that this is an allusion to Lorca's inability to reconcile these two aspects of his personality in reference to his homosexuality which was repressed, but ultimately the poem is more about expressing basic ideas and core emotions through surrealist imagery than it is any one of the interpretations offered above.

| Posted on 2009-05-18 | by a guest


.: :.

ok,green in egypsian culture means death the woman was green cause she was death also her eyes were of silver cause she was killed by the civil guards (guardias civiles)also the guy was a pirate so the civil guards were looking for him also the path of blood and tears are blood beacause of the guy´s injuries and tears because the old man is crying cause the guy is going to die.this is only my point of view,anyone can think wat he/she wants to think.

| Posted on 2009-05-01 | by a guest


.: :.

This is the story of a thief, a gipsy thief, which is going to find her girlfriend because he's hurt and he's going to die. the poem is written when the girl is arleady died. he comes back and the girl's father tells to the young man that she waited for him night and day, so that she couldn't see nothing more than him (ojos de plata/silver eyes). green is the colour of the water, because she sinked, so her skin become green like the water of a lake or a close source of water. guardias civiles are the policemen who are coming to take him to the jail, and they are the symbol of garcia lorca's hate for police, which is senn not as a protection of justice, but a way to emarginate different people, as gytans, as homosexuals.
All the symbols (especially the water and the moon) express death, and nature is often used to express pain and death

| Posted on 2009-04-14 | by a guest


.: :.

im just trying to figure out if one of u are correct

| Posted on 2009-04-14 | by a guest


.: :.

In Spanish green is also the colour of lechery, like blue in English. To me, it also has connotations of nature and possibly envy. On another site I read this poem described as a "gypsy Romeo and Juliet story" which fits quite well. I understand the young man in the poem to be a wounded gypsy contraband runner (not a soldier as some believe) who is returning to his love. He expresses the wish to trade his roaming lifestyle for a more settled existence. But, either because she believes he is dead or in order to escape the drunken Guardia Civil, the woman he loves kills herself and he arrives too late.

| Posted on 2009-03-24 | by a guest


.: :.

Green in Lorca's world is not the colour of innocence, but of death.
Green, cold, water are all death images.

| Posted on 2009-03-20 | by a guest


.: :.

A man wanting to have events go back to how they were initially were or innocence (green). It may be that the woman has past away, and he is yearning to be with or that she is a gipsy. He has fallen for a gipsy who he can never be with.

| Posted on 2008-11-21 | by a guest


.: :.

A woman waiting for her lover to come ends up tragically dying because she could not wait any longer; suggested by her "eyes of cold silver"

| Posted on 2008-10-26 | by a guest




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