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The Sights and Voices of Dispossession: The Fight for the Land and the Emerging Culture of the MST (The Movement of the Landless Rural Workers of Brazil)


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Emerging culture by media type -> Poems 46 resources (Edited by Else R P Vieira. Translation © Bernard McGuirk.)

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Zé Pinto


Planting playground songs (To the little landless)

Before we were nothing
Neither leaving nor arriving
We were a mere something
Over bridges under viaducts thrown
And, living like that, a being
Can be no one.

But one day the shout was loud
Papa and Mamma rose
And followed the crowd
And we became a seed
The seed of free land
A land with no boss

To be free and be human
To be a little bird, a flower
To be a child, an adolescent
To be young, a peasant
Farmer, citizenship to replant
A new day to harvest
From the flowerbeds of love.

And on the trails of death
Someone sowed life
And in the hands of conscience
Childhood, bread and sharing
But it was in playground songs
That we rescued our dreams
And became poetry.


November 2002

Resource ID:


Anthology of poems
A first-hand selection, unpublished in Brazil and elsewhere. A militant poetics; the social and political importance of the poet-singer (cantador), the construction of a canon of exclusion; the landless woman; the theme of death as life's horizon; the pedagogic project.
Else R P Vieira

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Project Director & Academic Editor: Else R P Vieira
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