The poems of Miguel Hernandez, belonging to the generation of 27, represent the Spain of hunger and war with a simplicity and proximity that are moving . We present a brief selection of the best compositions of this poet of the people.
Miguel Hernandez, the poet of light and shadow
Although by age he belonged to the generation of 1936, experts agree in framing the style of Miguel Hernandez (1910-1942) in the generation of 27. What has made him one of One of the most beloved and acclaimed poets is his ability to transform the Spain of death, famine and war into a lyrical beauty that springs from the soul.
Despite his limited training and being self-taught, this sheepherder became the town’s poet with lyrical compositions of great simplicity and effectiveness. The musicality of his verses and the power of his message have made his verses material to which many singer-songwriters have set music years after his death.
His commitment to leftist values and his death in prison as a victim of Franco’s repression made him an icon. But what continues to move millions of readers are the essential themes of his poetry : hunger, work, war, the countryside, love, hope… The lights and shadows of life.
15 poems by Miguel Hernandez of pain and hope
This is a selection of the most representative poems of the poet from Orihuela, which express his style and show his recurring themes.
1. Son of light and shadow
You are the wife night, the night in the
greatest moment of its lunar and feminine power,
you are midnight, the culminating night,
where sleep culminates, where love culminates.
I will give on your body when the night throws
its greedy desire for magnet and power.
A feverish astral feeling overwhelms me,
sets fire to my bones with a shiver.
The night air messes up your breasts,
and messes up and overturns bodies with its crash.
Like a storm of crazy beds,
overshadows pairs, makes them a single block.
The son is in the shadow: from the shadow he has sprung,
and at his origin the stars infuse a sowing,
a milky juice, a flow of warm heartbeat
that will force his bones to sleep and to the female.
Moving his sidereal forces in the shadow,
tending this shadow his shady constellation,
overturning the couples and making them nuptial.
You’re the night, wife. I am the noon.
Son of the dawn you are, son of noon.
And you must have lights imposed on everything,
while your mother and I go to agony,
asleep and awake, with love on our backs.
With love on their backs asleep and awake,
We will continue kissing in the deep son.
Kissing you and I kiss our dead,
kiss the first settlers of the world.
The most representative poem of the soul of Miguel Hernandez’s poetry: a call to the explosion of life, with its lights and shadows , and its link with sexual passions and the elements of nature.
Andalusian olive growers from Jaen,
haughty olive growers,
tell me in your soul: Who,
who raised the olive trees ?
Nothing raised them,
nor money, nor the Lord,
but the silent land,
work and sweat.
United to the pure water
and to the united planets,
the three gave the beauty
of twisted trunks.
Rise up olivo cano,
they said at the foot of the wind.
And oblivion raised a
powerful hand of foundation.
Andalusians from Jaen,
haughty olive growers,
tell me in your soul: Who
suckled the olive trees ?
The link between man and the land, the landscape of the underdeveloped Andalusian countryside of the 1930s and the struggle against the landowners were key themes in the poetry of Miguel Hernandez .
3. Lullabies of the onion The onion is
closed and poor
Frost of your days
and my nights.
Hunger and onions,
black ice and big round frost
In the cradle of hungermy child was
With onion blood
But your blood,
frosty with sugar,
onion and hunger.
Your laugh makes me free,
it gives me wings.
Soledades takes me away,
jail takes me away.
Mouth that flies,
heart that flashes on your lips
While in jail, Miguel Hernandez received a letter in which his wife told him that her son only ate bread and onions . Out of pain he wrote this heartbreaking poetry.
4. Sad wars
if the company is not love.
if they are not words.
if they don’t die of love.
Few such simple poems have become something so universal and timeless, eternal: a cry against violence and the vindication of love as the engine of man.
5. I call youth
Blood that does not overflow,
youth that does not dare, it
is not blood, it is not youth, it
neither shines nor flourishes.
Bodies that are born defeated,
defeated and gray die:
they come with the age of a century,
and are old when they die.
With the practical and musical beauty of these verses, the poet called on youth to defend certain values, to stand up courageously for freedom.
6. Winds of the people take me
Winds of the people take me,
winds of the people drag
me, spread my heart
and blow my throat.
The oxen bend their foreheads,
before the punishments:
the lions raise their foreheads
and at the same time punish
with their clamorous paw.
If I die, may I die
with my head held high.
Dead and twenty times dead,
my mouth against the grass,
I’ll have my teeth clenched and my beard determined.
Singing I wait for death,
there are nightingales that sing
above the rifles
and in the midst of battles.
Like a nightingale he thus sang the tragedy of a people, the Spanish civil war. This poetry of war is a mixture of epic and tears .
7. The yuntero child
Flesh from the yoke, was born
More humiliated than beautiful,
With his neck persecuted
By the yoke for his neck.
He is born, as the destined beating
from a discontented land
and a dissatisfied plow.
Among pure, living
cow manure, he brings to life an
, olive-colored soul .
This hungry child hurts me
like a great thorn,
and his ashen livingStir my oak soul.
Who will save that little boy
Smaller than a grain of oats
Where will the Executioner’s hammer come out
of this chain
He begins to live, and begins
to die from end to end,
raising the bark
of his mother with the yoke.
One of his best known poems, personifies in the miserable and hungry yuntero boy the poverty of an entire people and the hope of social revolution as salvation.
8. Elegy to Ramon Sije
I want to be crying the gardener
of the land that you occupy and dung,
companion of the soul, so early.
To the winged souls of the roses
of the cream almond tree I require you,
that we have to talk about many things,
soul mate, mate.
From the death of his soul friend at a very young age, the young Miguel Hernandez composed a poetry of a perfect style and a lively feeling that is still studied in schools.
9. Last song
Kisses will bloom
On the pillows.
And around the bodies
the savannah will raise
Nocturnal vine, perfumed.
Behind the window.
It will be the soft claw.
Give me hope.
This is how this poem ends where Miguel Hernandez represents his life as a painted house full of life: a metaphor of hopedespite the misfortunes.
10. The ray that does not cease
Will this ray that inhabits
my heart not cease from exasperated beasts
and angry forges and blacksmiths
where the freshest metal withers
Will this stubborn stalactite not cease
to cultivate its hard hair
like swords and rigid bonfires
towards my heart that bellows and screams
Written in 1936, it is considered the masterpiece of Miguel Hernandez because it perfects the style and develops its theme in a sublime, more allegorical symbology. It represents the union between heaven and earth , and the resurrection.
11. My heart is too much
Today I am without knowing I do not know how,
today I am only for sorrows,
Today I have no friendship,
today I just want
to rip my heart out
and put it under a shoe.
I have plenty of heart.
Today, lose heart,
I the most heartfelt of men,
and for the most, also the most bitter.
A sad poetry by Miguel Hernandez , in which he shows his pessimistic side, the shadow that exists in every man. “I have plenty of heart” is his way of saying that sometimes being so sensitive is a sentence.
Bear in mind hunger: remember its
shady past as foremen who paid in lead.
That wage at the price of blood charged,
with yokes on the soul, with blows on the back.
In each house, a hatred like a dark fig tree,
like a trembling bull with trembling horns,
breaks through the roofs, surrounds you and ambushes you,
and destroys you with gorings, dying dogs.
The poetry of Miguel Hernandez is the lyrical testimony of a time of scarcity, especially in rural areas. This poetry was the symbol of a generation , the generation of hunger.
13. The wounded (For freedom)
For freedom I bleed, I fight, I survive.
For freedom, my eyes and my hands,
like a carnal tree, generous and captive,
I give to the surgeons.
For freedom I feel more hearts
than sands in my chest: my veins foam,
and I enter hospitals, and I enter cotton
For freedom I am shooting away
from those who have rolled his statue in the mud.
And I knock myself off my feet, my arms,
my house, everything.
Because where some empty sockets dawn,
she will place two stones of future gaze
and will make new arms and new legs grow
in the felled flesh.
Wings of sap will resound without autumn
, relics of my body that I lose in each wound.
Because I am like the felled tree, which returned:
because I still have life.
The music that Joan Manuel Serrat put on it has turned it into a hymn of freedom. It is a beautiful song to the hope of the new man who is born.
14. Everything is full of you
Everything is full of you,
and everything of me is full:
the cities are full,
just like the cemeteries
of you, of all the houses,
of me, of all the bodies.
This love poetry contains the stylistic features of the poet: metric precision, musicality, contrasts, assonance rhyme, simple composition.
15. The hands
Two kinds of hands face each other in life,
they spring from the heart, burst through the arms,
jump, and end up on the light wounded
by blows, by claws.
The hand is the tool of the soul, its message,
and the people have in it their combatant branch.
Raise up, wave your hands in a great swell,
men of my seed.
The industrious hands of the workers
will come down on you with teeth and blades.
And so many exploiters will see them cut
at their very knees.
One of Miguel Hernandez’s political poems that epically sums up the communist message: the hands are the worker’s capital .
- Read our 15 essential short poems.
- Discover the 16 types of poems with some examples.