Aquí están las respuestas de la comunidad educativa de K.W.Barrett Elementary School a las preguntas de Neruda hechas el primer semestre del año escolar del 2002. Las respuestas son de profesores, alumnos de 5º de primaria y una madre de una niña de kinder de la clase de Ms. Henderson.Las respuestas que están en español e inglés son de personas que respondieron en español, pues ese era su idioma materno, y por de pronto el idioma en el que Neruda escribió las preguntas.
Here are the responses from the KWBarrett Elementary School educational community to Neruda’s questions asked the first semester of the 2002 school year. The responses are from teachers, 5th grade students, and a mother of a kindergarten girl in the class from Ms. Henderson. The answers that are in Spanish and English are from people who responded in Spanish, since that was their mother tongue, and for now the language in which Neruda wrote the questions.
Recuerdo que para que los profesores respondieran, dedicamos parte de una sesión de la clase de escritura de Ms. Vawter para hacerlo. Seleccioné las preguntas que me parecieron más inspiradoras y cada uno respondía las que quería. Creo que de los profesores solo Ché Abdeljawad y Connie Quinzio siguen enseñando en Barrett.
En el caso de los niños, me acuerdo que las profes de quinto, especialmente los de ELL, generosamente me ofrecieron una hora en la que presenté el proyecto y los niños respondieron. Fue gratificante ver cómo los niños que no sabían bien inglés recibían con alegría este proyecto.
I remember that in order for the teachers to respond, we dedicated part of a session of Ms. Vawter’s writing class to do so. I selected the questions that I found most inspiring and each person answered the ones they wanted. Of all the teachers, I think only Ché Abdeljawad and Connie Quinzio continue to teach at Barrett.
In the case of the children, I remember that the fifth grade teachers, especially the ELL teachers, generously offered me an hour in which I presented the project and the children responded. It was gratifying to see how children who did not know English well received this project with joy.
En el caso de la mamá, no me acuerdo exactamente cómo llegó su respuesta. Solo recuerdo a la profe de la hija, Ms. Henderson, quien estaba en mi clase de escritura.
Ahora, cuando leo las respuestas robadas a horas lectivas, me admiro de la facilidad que tiene Neruda para sacarnos lo mejor nuestro.
In the case of the mother, I do not remember exactly how her answer came about. I only remember her daughter’s teacher, Ms. Henderson, who was in my writing class.
Now, when I read the answers stolen at school hours, I am amazed at how easy it is for Neruda to get the best out of us.
NERUDA ASKS, BARRETT RESPONDS…A Poetry Project
by Piedad Alliende (Children´s Literature Class, Instructor: Jacki Vawter (EDIS 731, UVA), December 2002)
Based on “Libro de preguntas- Question Book, 1974” in Pablo Neruda. Late and Posthumous Poems 1968-1974. Edited and translated by Ben Belitt. Bilingual ed. New York: Grove Press, 1988. pages 174-201, and Neruda, Pablo. El libro de las preguntas: Selección. Santiago: Andrés Bello, 1988. Illustrations by Eduardo Osorio.
¿Quiénes gritaron de alegría
Cuando nació el color azul?
Who screamed with joy
when color blue was born?
Everyone who loves the sea and the sky on a sunny day screamed with joy when the color blue was born.
The dusty necked black man
toiling his land
But bound in blue
screams for joy
that his song will be heard
A robin´s breast
A mountain pool
A blue bonnet
A cobalt mine
A Bethlehem night sky
The eagle soaring over the horizon screamed with joy when the color blue was born!
The humpback whale swimming in the depths of the ocean screamed with joy when the color blue was born.
The baby with the blue boots screamed with joy when the color blue was born!
The earth and clouds rejoiced, for now they had reason to unite and mingle.
This is a clever question—I honestly don´t know.
Yes I screamed with joy when the color blue was born.
Yes that bluejay that sings in the late spring afternoon. Yes I screamed with joy at the luscious taste of fresh picked blueberries on a mid July day.
Yes I scream with joy at the light of the sparkling blue waters of Frenchmens Bay.
The sky screamed with joy when the color blue was born. “Just the color I was waiting for!” the sky shouted.
The jay (explanation
St. Ann, for she was the mother of Mary. St. Ann for saw the importance her daughter would play in Church history—being the virgin mother of Jesus. To honor this woman—mother of Mary, Grandmother of Jesus—God the Father said blue would be our Lady´s Holy Color.
The sky screamed with joy when the color blue was born.
Mary Lou Rubé
God is in His Heaven
Alls right with the world
Joyce G. Gamse
Every new parent who was shocked to see the color of their son before he took his first breath.
White is the mother of all the colors. Her screams welcome all others into the world.
The clouds, for now they were free to break apart and dance.
The clouds screamed with joy. Finally they could show their beauty against the right background when before they were mixed with the messy gray swirl of creation.
The sky announced,
“I´ll take that!”
The ocean said,
The robin´s eggsbell quietly asked,
“Is there any left for me?”
The whole Earth!
Gustavo Villazón, 10 years, 5th grade
Because the world is blue
Alieta O. 10 years, 5th grade
Si todos los ríos son dulces
¿De dónde saca sal el mar?
If all rivers are fresh water
Where does the sea get its salt?
The oceans swallowed all our sorrow, soaking in the salt of our tears.
From the river beds tears—As the river water leaves it´s home; Earth, the river bed cries. First in loneliness—missing her children; Second in pride—the river water becomes part of a larger world.
From the tears of all the whales that have been slaughtered on its shores.
When the fresh water evaporates, the tears of the drowned and lost are left behind.
The salt of the sea comes from the tears of lost sailors and mermaids who long for feet for freedom.
La sal de los mares es como la ternura en las personas, algunas la tienen, otros no, las que la tienen son como los ríos dulces.
The salt of the oceans is like tenderness in people; some have it, some don´t; those who have it are like sweet rivers
Jimena Antelo, mother of Andrea Cardozo, K, Ms. Henderson.
The sea gets its salt from a woman. That woman came to the shore of the sea. She asked the sea “Who are you?” and the sea answered “Come in, you will find who I am”. She didn´t go in. Then she came back the next day. She asked the sea “Who are you?” and the sea answered “Come in, you will find who I am”. She went in this time she dissolved because she was made of salt and that is why the sea has salt.
Cinthy Villarroel, 5th grade
¿Por qué me muevo sin querer,
Por qué no puedo estar inmóvil?
Why do I move without wanting to,
Why can´t I stand still?
I move without wanting to because I am a tiny pinpoint on a ball whirling and hurling through space.
It beckons and calls the early morning air—“come come see what I offer you.” The smell of fallen leaves the tip of the morning just opening its eyes, the sound of asalter beginning.
I think that he wants to stand still because he wants to see the ocean forever like she said he loves the sea, the ocean.
Daniela Estivariz, 10, 5th grade
Is it because I jump when I have joy or is it because I run for fear? Why am I moving? Please, please tell me why.
Elias, 5th grade
I think that I am not standing still because I have joy in my Heart or I am nervous. I don´t know why I am not standing still, but maybe I am mad. I wish I knew, I really want to know.
Carlos Mendoza, 5th grade.
¿A quién engaña la magnolia
con su fragancia de limones?
Who´s the magnolia kidding
With its lemon aroma?
Absolutely no one! We know you´re there, sweetening the early days of summer.
¿Cómo saben las estaciones
que deben cambiar de camisas?
How do the seasons know
when do they have to change shirts?
The seasons know they have to change shirts when suddenly they realize things have been the same color for just too long…
The seasons change when the birds tell them to—by flying away or coming home again.
Joyce G. Gamse
As autumn approaches, the earth is chilled. Trees drop their leaves to use as a sweater. As winter approaches the world is cold. The clouds drop their snow to use as a blanket.
The seasons know when they have to change shirts by the hotness and the coldness.
When the sun comes out and the moon goes home
And when the moon comes out again and the sun goes home
When the lights go on and the go off
When it gets windy
When it snow and when it rains
When there is storm
When children make something with snow and then it melts
That´s how the seasons know.
Rubi Guevara, 5th grade
¿Por qué no ataca el tiburón
a las impávidas sirenas?
Why doesn´t the shark attack
the fearless mermaids?
Shark sense fear, while mermaids fear none.
The shark respect the audacity and cunning of the fearless mermaids as he shares these same qualities.
The shark doesn´t attack the fearless mermaids because they want to look at the pretty mermaids.
Mary Lou Rubé
El tiburón no ataca porque la sirena es sagrada y la sirena es conocida por todos porque vive en el agua.
The shark doesn´t attack the mermaid because the mermaid is sacred y known for everybody to live in the water.
John, 5th grade
Shark doesn´t attack fearless mermaids because they are pretty and sing beautiful and their voices hypnotize the shark to be fearless.
No name, 5th grade
¿Dime, la rosa está desnuda
o sólo tiene ese vestido?
Tell me, is the rose naked
Or does it just have only one dress?
The rose is adorned with such beauty as Jesus said in parable
Consider the lilies of the field
Neither do they weave nor toil
Yet Solomon in all his glory
Is not attired as well as these.
Joyce G. Gamse
Rose knows she looks fantastic in her red dress so why should she chose another?
Yes, I guess the rose is already wearing a layered dress.
Vilma Yarisa, 11, 5th grade
La rosa está desnuda porque todavía es una semilla pequeñita que está recién sembrada para crecer.
La rosa tiene un vestido porque es una Barbie que se llama Rosa y que está usando un vestido bonito.
The rose is naked because she is still a tiny seed that is just planted for growing.
The rose has a dress because she is a Barbie doll and her name is Rose and she is wearing a pretty dress.
Heydi Tejeda Maldonado, 5th grade
¿En qué idioma cae la lluvia
sobre ciudades dolorosas?
In what language does the rain fall
over hurting cities?
The language falls in all different languages over the hurting cities.
Mary Lou Rubé
The language is Chinese, German, Japanese, and language of destruction.
Gustavo Villazón, 10 years, 5th grade
The rain speaks in every language especially in a hurting city. The rain speaks the language of happiness to the poor in a hurting city. The rain talks to the running away citizen and bring hope in every drop. The rain reminds the flowers to wake. And at last the rain speaks to the sun telling it to let the rainbow shine and telling it to shine over the hurting cities.
Suchana Costa, 5th grade
It falls in the language of tears because the cities are deeply hurting by all that´s happened.
Brayan Ortega, 5th grade
¿El 4 es 4 para todos?
Son todos los sietes iguales?
Is 4 always 4 for everybody?
Are all 7´s equal?
It depends on who you ask!
¿Por qué voy rodando sin ruedas,
Volando sin alas ni plumas?
Why do I roll around without wheels
And fly without feathers or wings?
Because I am human. I have no regard for the laws of nature. They do not apply to me.
¿Cómo se llama una flor
que vuela de pájaro en pájaro?
What´s the name of the flower
That flies from bird to bird?
That sweet-smelling flower is me!
¿Cómo se llama la tristeza
en una oveja solitaria?
What´s the word for sadness
in a sheep that is alone?
I have not “herd”
Sheep sadness that is alone might be alone—herd, alone stands for an animal or person that is lonely, and herd stands for a big crowd of something in one space. Now that´s how a sheep that´s sad must really feel of being all alone.
Jennifer C. Romero, 5th grade
¿Si las moscas fabrican miel
Ofenderán a las abejas?
If flies fabricate honey
Should the bees be offended?
Absolutely! They must not have gotten the memo on the current union rules: flies drone, irritate, interfere with people and animals and hang out in filthy places. Bees are orderly, teach each other dances and are the makers of quintessential sweetness.
The bees should be offended if flies made honey because the bees work hard coming up of the idea of honey and work hard making honey. It´s also not good if someone stold your invention or idea.
Roxana Mejía, 5th grade
¿Por qué lloran tanto las nubes
y cada vez son más alegres?
Why do the clouds cry so much,
and each time are happier?
The clouds cry because they lone the feeling of joy that accompany crying.
Because they have been able to clean the streets and the roads with their tears. I always feel that rain makes everything feel clean and fresh.
Yo pienso que ellas lloran porque cuando algo feliz pasa ellas se ponen más felices y empiezan a llorar. O ellas lloran cuando algo malo o triste pasa en el mundo.
I think they cry because when something happen on the world they get more happier and start to cry. Or they start to cry when something bad happen.
Gianina Corrales, 5th grade
Las nubes lloran porque están tristes que venga un tornado y que destruya la ciudad donde viven las personas. Las nubes lloran porque tiene que llover para estar todo fresco del calor. Las nubes lloran porque están muy tristes. Las nubes lloran porque tiene que llover cuando el tiempo está mal.
Clouds cry because they are sad that a tornado might come and destroy the city where the people live. Clouds cry because has to rain in order that everything is fresh of heat. Clouds cry because has to rain when is bad weather.
Maria Claure Soto, 5th grade
Clouds cry when a person dies. The clouds get scared and start to cry when there is lightning. Sometimes clouds don´t cry because all the grownups and kids are okay: clouds don´t cry because the sun comes up and talk to them.
No name, 5th grade
¿Por qué se suicidan las hojas
cuando se sienten amarillas?
Why do the leaves kill themselves
As soon as they feel yellow?
They don´t kill themselves—they just need new clothes.
Because they hate living
Caleb, 10 years, 5th grade.
The leaves can´t live without their signature color, they know they´re fading. So they race with the sun to see who is more yellow, and as soon as they see that the sun´s brilliance outshines them, they sadly kill themselves.
Fawad Ahmad, 5th grade
The leaves feel blue when they turn yellow.
The leaves don´t look so pretty so they jump off of their branches.
They can´t survive the cold.
Saima, 5th grade
¿Cómo le digo a la tortuga
que yo le gano en lentitud?
How can I tell the turtle
that I won in slowness?
Hey – turtle- I came in second!
I could pay the clock to stop and show the turtle the time that he spent running!
After the race, I could tell the cameraman to fast-forward when the race shows the turtle in the video of it!
Jesse Wood, 5th grade
¿Pero por qué no se convence el Jueves de ir después del Viernes?
But why isn´t Thursday convinced to go after Friday?
Because Thursday is scared of Saturday.
Adrian F. 10 and Caleb, 11, 5th grade
Thursday isn´t convinced to go after Friday because Thursday is afraid to go after Friday.
Thursday can´t stand being next to Saturday.
Judy So, 5th grade
¿Si se termina el amarillo
con qué vamos a hacer el pan?
If all the yellow is used up,
with what shall we make bread?
If there is no more yellow then I should use the wolves tongue to bake bread.
Miguel Rodríguez, 5th grade
The moon will send down a yellow beam which will turn weeds into wheat and the people will eat.
The bees will lend their yellow clothing and honey and the people will eat and dance.
Daffodils will sneeze out shiny pollen into the bowl which will become yellow paint and the people will paint their faces and eat and dance and enjoy.
Camelia Rubalcava, 5th grade
¿Qué pasa con las golondrinas
que llegan tarde al colegio?
What happens to the swallows
When they´re tardy for school?
Lo que le pasa a las golondrinas que llegan tarde al colegio es que ese día no van al colegio.
What happen to the swallows when they are tardy for school is that that day they don´t go to school.
Andrea C. 10 years, 5th Grade
They get punished and get spanked by the teachers scaly, terrible, tail. The fishes drip there small soggy tears down to the endless sea floor.
George, 5th grade
They don´t learn how to migrate.
¿En el desierto de la sal
cómo se puede florecer?
In the desert of salt
How can you bloom?
Si se podría hacer que una flor florezca la regaría con agua dulce.
“La regaría con dulzura”
If one can make that a flower blooms I would water it with sweet water. I would water it with sweetness.
Jimena Antelo, mother of Andrea Cardozo, K, Ms. Henderson´s class.
The flower can be white. A little princess comes to the desert and cries, cries, cries her eyes out. Her tears make a river that flows through the desert so the white flower can bloom and other plants too. The little princess was happy when she saw the plants grow. She got a little flower so she can always remember that day.
Patricia, 5th grade
¿Qué letras conoce la abeja
para saber su itinerario?
What letters does know the bee
To learn its itinerary?
No conoce las letras, pero conoce sus obligaciones y derechos.
It doen´t know the letters, but knows its obligations and rights.
Jimena Antelo, mother of Andrea Cardozo, K, Ms. Henderson´s class.
He needs to know the letters to te key words that make them famous.
H-O-N-E-Y and S-T-I-N-G.
Sam DelGiudia, 5th grade
¿Es verdad que reparten cartas
Transparentes, por todo el cielo?
Is it true they spread transparent
letters through all over the sky?
Yes, it is. That is why clouds are white. They are envelopes holding the secrets of rain. And the North wind blows the secret of the rain to the people of the Earth.
Eric Perez, 5th grade
¿Y a quién le sonríe el arroz
con infinitos dientes blancos?
At whom is the rice grinning
With its infinite white teeth?
The rice is grinning at the other colors and also at white for giving its color to the rice.
Eric Ramírez, 5th grade
The rice is grinning at all it´s enemies like the great white shark, the lion, and the wolf. The rice is bragging that it has whiter and sharper teeth than the beasts of the animal kingdom.
Edwin Funes, 5th grade
At boiling water and chirping oil. At the puzzled teacher who cannot explain the concept of infinitude.
¿Dónde deja el puñal el águila
cuando se acuesta en una nube?
Where does the eagle leave its dagger
When its rest on a cloud?
In the Rockies, the Andes, and the mountains of Kathmandu.
Beyond the Alps, the Apennines, and the Black Sea.
Twirled in its nest
Waiting to wake up…
And use it again
¿Por qué razón o sinrazón
llora la lluvia su alegría?
Why does the rain weep with joy,
with or without cause?
He is crying with joy because it´s a good day to rain. He weeps with joy for his good day. But sometimes, the rain cries because the sun or clouds hurt his feelings.
Elvia, 5th grade
Finally it can get rid of the clouds.
Likes to be free
¿Quién canta en el fondo del agua
en la laguna abandonada?
Who sings from the bottom of the water
in the abandoned lagoon?
En la laguna abandonada canta el sapo porque está contento y porque le quiere a una sapa. El está contento ahí debajo de la laguna porque ahí están sus amigos y el puede cantar para sus amigos
In the abandoned lagoon sings the frog because he is happy and because he likes another frog. He is happy at the bottom of the lagoon because there are his friends and he can sing for his friends.
Erika Quiroz, 5th grade
The fish sings an opera with itsr bubbles to all the other fishes.
The wind dives down, rushes through the water and sings to the seaweed.
The hissing of the electric eels sings to the sand.
Malayika Cincotta, 5th grade
¿De qué ríe la sandía
Cuando la están asesinando?
What is the watermelon laughing about
When it´s being killed?
I don´t know. Maybe he thinks it tickles. Also he wants to share his red juicy self.
Jake Huston, 5th grade.
¿Cuándo lee la mariposa
lo que vuela escrito en sus alas?
When does the butterfly read
What flies written in its wings?
I am too busy to read
I am flying
Escaping from the kid´s trap
Or the bug collector
I don´t have time to read
Only to escape.