Salvadoran revolutionary and poet, Roque Dalton, a member of the People’s Revolutionary Army (ERP), was executed on May 10, 1975

Published on May 10, 2024, by Il Grido del Popolo©️

Salvadoran revolutionary and poet, Roque Dalton, a member of the People’s Revolutionary Army (ERP), was executed on May 10, 1975 as a result of an internal struggle over the political direction of the ERP, possibly at hand of its leader, Joaquín Villalobos.

When revolution is outlined on the horizon
the old cauldron of religions gets stirred up.

In normal times
religion meant going to Mass
paying tithes for God’s house
baptizing children
and confessing sins to keep one’s account in order.

When revolution is outlined on the horizon
churches remember the masses
and come down from the clouds and mysteries
and Sunday tranquility.

Fat pastors speak of the end of the world
when what’s approaching is the end of exploitation;
hysteric prophets speak of deciding between Good and Evil
when the people need to decide
against oppression and hunger.

When social revolution begins to unfurl its flags
the heirs of those who crucified Christ
tell us Christ is the only hope
precisely because he waits for us
there in his kingdom, that is not of this world.

This is the religion pointed to by Marx
as “the opium of the people”
since in that form it’s more a drug for confusing the heads of men
and hindering them from finding their calling in the social struggle.

But Camilo Torres, among others,
has told us there is a positive religion too
that surges from the soul of revolution
by way of poems and songs,
and that one risks one’s life in this world
and not after death.
In this religion men who serve are
(like true communists)
the salt of the earth.

Roque Dalton – Two Religions