Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz

Hear me with your eyes

Hear me with your eyes
now that distant hears cannot attend,
and, in absent sights,
Hear reproaches sobbing from this pen.
And as you cannot hear a voice so faint,
than hear me deaf,
for mute is my complaint.

. . .

Óyeme con los ojos

Óyeme con los ojos,
ya que están tan distantes los oídos,
y de ausentes enojos
en ecos, de mi pluma mis gemidos;
y ya que a ti no llega mi voz ruda,
óyeme sordo, pues me quejo muda.

. . .

Juana Inés de la Cruz, born November 12, 1651, in San Miguel Nepantla, a village south of Mexico City. Enters Convent of San Jerónimo (aged 20); wrote many poems, plays, studied philosophy, music and science. In 1691 she writes the famous (regarded as a key proto-feminist manifesto) 'Respuesta a Sor Filotea', defending the rights of women to study and write. She was a rebel nun, and a poet whose ingenious, eloquent, and expressive verse has earned her a place as the outstanding 17th-century poet of Spanish America. She was a woman of genius whose ideas and accomplishments were ahead of her time. In 1695 Sor Juana contracts plague and dies 17th April, aged 46.

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