In this anthology, Rosalía de Castro speaks to our lonelinesses, to our longing for connection in an increasingly disconnected world, to the solace found in rootedness, to the writing of our desires onto the natural world, to climate change. Though she is a nineteenth-century poet, from a little-known corner of the world, her words reverberate into the present. The ocean, the rivers, and the loves and the loss that Castro speaks to, that I share here, offer, I hope, a solace, an exaltation in the connection between the human and the environmental, even when the connection is rooted in sorrow. They are a balm, a reminder of the power in care. This anthology is for now; it is for a world being ravaged by climate change and shadowed by authoritarianism; it is for us who root ourselves in the crumbling soil to hold it and ourselves together.
Author Rosalía de Castro
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From the four cardinal points
of our good planet
–young, for all its many wrinkles– thousands of intelligences powerful and active
to expand the fields of science,
so vast already that reason can lose itself in their immense foliage,
attend the meeting that progress
gives them from its temple of a hundred doors.
Tireless workers, I salute you, full of wonder and of respect full,
seeing how the Faith that guided one day toward the desert the sainted anchorite, today with that same transparent blindfold
unto the doorstep of the impossible leads you. Hope and believe! Let them believe who believe and love with a doubled passion those who hope.