Where are you coming from, my brother?
Who took away your land and sent the police after you?
Hasn’t the pain left a wound,
Or have you left your soul on your land?
Isn’t it enough to be a repressed woman
who has dedicated herself to harvesting pain?
You are a victim of killer bullets,
shots from the thugs of this terrible oligarchy.
Farmers from faraway lands, to what have you dedicated your life?
To be a victim of the company that has ruined your life?
There is no solace in your gaze, today your life is over
because you’ve been condemned to begging.
An Afro-Colombian from repressed lands
your life has been marked with constant disgraces.
They killed your family for catching fish
saying that they only wanted to better your life.
Today our indigenous peoples walk with their heads held high,
because they demanded respect for their reserves and their lives.
They are the possessors of all the wisdom
but have been killed because they will not support the lies.
Where are you coming from my brother
And how can I cure you?
If the pain is so much
which today destroys your life,
let me harvest
all of this lived experience
to speak to the people
who are still asleep
Peace is impossible,
and let no president tell you otherwise
while there are still assassinations
of blacks, indigenous, and farmers.
Watching Colombia wash over
with rivers of vivid blood,
we are so tired of this
in my beloved country.
The blood that is now being spilled
is that of women, men, and children
who fought with respect
for what is just and what is worthy.
They demanded with care
the land on which they’ve lived.
And they do not wish for their children
cement, smoke, and cold.
That’s why, my brother
I invite you to vote
remembering always your territory and your children
without forgetting of course any of our faraway brothers
who, like many in Colombia, are without a place to call home.
by Jhon Henry Camargo Varela
Video of the poem courtesy of Christian Peacemaker Teams Colombia