Lost Your Hope to the Sea of Obamamania? Remember…It’s Che’s B-Day!

June 15, 2008


One of my great fears about the Obamamania juggernaut taking the country has to do with how easily many of us lose it-our hope in ourselves- by giving it to forces outside of ourselves, forces like the Democratic party, that………eh, I don’t think I need to tell you anything about who they are.

Instead, I provide you with an example of the hope promoted by one who, though idolized and made iconic, still challenges us to challenge the cold, grey powers behind the Democrats and the Republicans; I bring you a reminder that today is Che’s birthday.

Check out this video sent to me from a still-militant-after-all-these years friend of mine (ie; he’s a former poetico-military combatant from Nicaragua who’s turning 70 pretty soon). Musical maven Silvio Rodriguez leads a radical chorus of artists that includes the late great Ibrahim Ferrer, members of the Buena Vista Social Club and other singers you’ve not heard of unless you get beyond the Walls of Civilized Musical Discourse brought to you by the for-profit propaganda system that spins your life. And, in case you want to join the coro, I’ve included the lyrics (in Spanish and in English, no less) to Carlos Puebla’s balada popular, Hasta Siempre, below too.

Hasta Siempre, Comandante Che Guevara.

Hasta Siempre

Aprendimos a quererte
desde la histórica altura
donde el sol de tu bravura
le puso cerco a la muerte.


Aquí se queda la clara,

la entrañable transparencia,
de tu querida presencia
Comandante Che Guevara.

Tu mano gloriosa y fuerte
sobre la historia dispara
cuando todo Santa Clara
se despierta para verte.


Vienes quemando la brisa
con soles de primavera
para plantar la bandera
con la luz de tu sonrisa.


Tu amor revolucionario
te conduce a nueva empresa
donde esperan la firmeza
de tu brazo libertario.


Seguiremos adelante
como junto a ti seguimos
y con Fidel te decimos:
!Hasta siempre, Comandante!


Until Always [English]

We learned to love you
from the heights of history
with the sun of your bravery
you laid siege to death


The deep (or beloved) transparency of your presence
became clear here
Commandante Che Guevara

Your glorious and strong hand
fires at history
when all of Santa Clara
awakens to see you


You come burning the winds
with spring suns
to plant the flag
with the light of your smile


Your revolutionary love
leads you to a new undertaking
where they are awaiting the firmness
of your liberating arm


We will carry on
as we did along with you
and with Fidel we say to you:
Until Always, Commandante!


2 Responses to “Lost Your Hope to the Sea of Obamamania? Remember…It’s Che’s B-Day!”

  1. yvonne Says:

    What a beautiful video, thank you for a breath of fresh air and reminder of the one that fought for change with his life. Happy B’Day Che

  2. robvato Says:

    De Nada, Yvonne. Let’s hope Obama and his multimillion dollar Hope machine breath at least a little of that air. R

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