In the post-Matanza era, elegiac poetry in Central America is eloquent through stark simplicity. The great cathedral organ of Hispanic tradition is sparingly intoned or renounced in favor of an unamplified voice that is at once personal and collective. Death in the Central American isthmus is not cortés, as elegized by Manrique; Death as personified by Alegría is the implacable god Tlaloc demanding blood; his victims are the dispossessed, stripped of land, customs, dress, language, and history. The language of elegy must faithfully reflect this; a lament for the children of the Woman...
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