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SmokeLong Quarterly

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A Drop of Dew

Story by Edgar Omar Avilés (Read author interview) December 16, 2005

A drop of dew on the tip of a trembling willow leaf refuses to fall and be swallowed by the ground. The drop, desperately, with her eyes shut tight, begs the gods for mercy. Two drops rise from her and then four; and the drop becomes a drip; and the drop becomes rain; and the drop becomes a storm; and the drop becomes a river and waterfall; and the drop becomes a sea; and the drop becomes a merciless flood spilling into ports and cities: the cries and screams of the living creatures fill the world, and even the continents drown.

Powerful, the drop of dew laughs, but she stops as she feels the dry throat of the ground devouring her. Then she opens her eyes and looks up at the willow tree and the leaf, still trembling, from which she has fallen.

Una gota de rocío, en la punta de una temblorosa hoja de sauce, se niega a caer y ser tragada por la tierra. La gota, desesperada, con sus ojillos cerrados, suplica a los dioses misericordia: entonces de ella surgen dos gotas y luego cuatro; y la gota se convierte en gotera; y la gota se convierte en lluvia; y la gota se convierte en tormenta; y la gota se convierte en río y cascada; y la gota se convierte en mar; y la gota se convierte en una despiadada inundación que se derrama en puertos y ciudades: los llantos y gritos de los seres abarcan al Mundo, cuyos continentes sucumben ahogándose también.

Poderosa, la gota de rocío se carcajea, pero deja de hacerlo al sentir la seca garganta de la tierra devorándola, entonces abre sus ojillos y arriba ve al sauce y a la hoja, todavía temblorosa, de la que ha caído.

translated by Toshiya A. Kamei

About the Author

Edgar Omar Avilés was born in Morelia, Michoacán, México, on May 22, 1980. He studied Hispanic literature at the Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México. His stories have appeared in literary journals and anthologies, including Los Mejores Cuentos Mexicanos 2004 (Joaquín Mortiz) and Novísimos Cuentos de la República Mexicana (Tierra Adentro, 2005).

About the Translator

Toshiya Kamei holds an MFA in Literary Translation from the University of Arkansas. His translations include Liliana Blum’s The Curse of Eve and Other Stories (2008), Naoko Awa’s The Fox’s Window and Other Stories (2010), Espido Freire’s Irlanda (2011), and Selfa Chew’s Silent Herons (2012). Other translations have appeared in The Global Game (2008), Sudden Fiction Latino (2010), and My Mother She Killed Me, My Father He Ate Me (2010).

This story appeared in Issue Eleven of SmokeLong Quarterly.
SmokeLong Quarterly Issue Eleven
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