Illustration: Nelson Ponce.

Literature feat. Music: Behind the conga (dance poem)

by
Otros

“Conga one:
I don’t have no hope no more, mama.
I don’t have no hope for nothin’ no more.

Conga two:
Whoever’s in charge in heave:
free these prisoners!

Conga three:
You told me, mama
that twenty years is nothin’.
Oh, why’d you trick me, mama.

Conga four:
I wish I knew
what’s waiting for me.

Conga five:
Chepo, Chepo,
let her by!
Guarirupara but Chepo, Chepo
let her by!

Conga six:
You called me at two
You called me at two
I couldn’t go
let’s see now
what you’re calling me for.

Conga seven:
Hey Freedom for Isaura.
Listen Freedom for Isaura.

Conga eight:
Let’s go to Casa Granda
an’ throw down some bills
eh
an’ throw down some bills.

Conga nine:
River’s deep, river’s deep.
I jump in and don’t touch bottom.
I jump in and don’t touch bottom.

Conga ten:
Ave María, why
why they take me to Boniato
if I don’t bite
if I don’t kill
why they take me to Boniato.

Conga eleven:
How he will not cry
how he will not cry
how he will not cry
if they took him to Camagüey.

Conga twelve:
There’s nothing new, there’s nothing new
come on my people!
there’s nothing new!

Conga thirteen:
Chorus: Ay but good Santiago / good Santiago
Good Santiaguito / good Santiaguito
Good Santiagón / good Santiagón.
The pizzeria / pizzeria
good pizza / good pizza
the boulevard / boulevard
the still life / the still life.
Chorus: Ay but good Santiago ...
In the morning / in the morning
a copelita / a copelita
in Enramada / in Enramada
or in Palmita / or Palmita
Chorus: Ay but good Santiago ...
Final chorus:
Aglú glu glu, aglu glu.

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Mane R. Ferret (Santiago de Cuba, 1961) Singer-songwriter, poet and storyteller. This is a excerpt from her unpublished book Iglú y Palo Santo.

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