Por que Cantamos

Adapted from marioMario Benedetti, Uruguay 1979

Voice 1: if each hour brings death
If time is a den of thieves
The breezes carry a scent of evil
And life is just a moving target

People: you will ask why we sing

Voice 2: if our finest people are shunned
Our homeland is dying of sorrow
And the human heart is shattered
Even before shame explodes

People: you will ask why we sing

Voice 3: if the trees and the sky remain
As far off as the horizon
Some absence hovers over the evening
And disappointment colours the morning

People: you will ask why we sing

Voice 4: we sing because the river is humming
And when the river hums
The river hums
We sing because cruelty has no name
But we can name its destiny
We sing because the child because everything
Because the future because the people
We sing because the survivors
And our dead want us to sing

People: you will ask why we sing

Voice 5: we sing because shouting is not enough
Nor is sorrow or anger
We sing because we believe in people
And we shall overcome these defeats

People: you will ask why we sing

Voice 6: we sing because the sun recognizes us
And the fields smell of spring
And because in this stem and that fruit
Every question has its answer

People: you will ask why we sing

Voice 7: we sing because it is raining on the furrow
And we are the militants of life
And because we cannot and will not
Allow our song to become ashes

People: We sing

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