When the Regime
commanded the unlawful books to be burned,
teams of dull oxen hauled huge cartloads to the bonfires.
Then a banished writer, one of the best,
scanning the list of excommunicated texts,
became enraged: he’d been excluded!
He rushed to his desk, full of contemptuous wrath,
to write fierce letters to the morons in power —
Burn me! he wrote with his blazing pen —
Haven’t I always reported the truth?
Now here you are, treating me like a liar!
Translated by Michael R. Burch