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Fear of the Street

Published by Sânia Campos in Daydreams
data: 22/03/2012

Afraid of the street,

You cannot see the moon anymore

Walking through the streets of Belo Horizonte

On a full moon night

 And walking by the street where I grew up

I was touched with a “fear” that predominates,

The insecurity and isolation of families,

So many electric fences, high walls, padlocks, etc… and

Along came this daydream…

Who of us looks at the sky, admires the moon

And walks peacefully through the streets?

The moon which has been sung in proses and verses

Inspired poets and lovers

Forgotten by us lately

Productive urban citizens

“Homo economicus”,

We live at high speed

The full moon is there, still

At the reach of our eyes

Public moon, it is everyone’s

It doesn’t even charge any tolls

But we don’t have time anymore

We run around the city streets.

Ah, the city streets!

Public street, it is everyone’s

To be occupied, a meeting place.

But which street ????

I revisit the street of my childhood

In space and in memory.

Late afternoon, early evening

Get-togethers that rejoice the heart,

Children’s voices and shouts fill the street

Playing hide and go seek, capture the flag, playing ball.

Teenagers romancing in the doorways.

The years have gone by

And like everything, my street has also changed.

They demolished the neighbor’s house

Built buildings, built walls.

Iron grates and electric fences.

The residents stay locked up in their homes,

Isolating themselves more and more.

Late afternoon, early evening

The street nearly deserted.

They whisper the latest news.

About hazards, death, weapons and violence.

Too dangerous to go out and walk around.

Fear is now what populates this street.

A silence of voices,

Listening to the noise of car sirens.

Apprehensive, their step stiff and tight

Students and night workers cross each other in the streets,

None dare to look up

To look and see each other.

The neighbors are strangers now,

Few still greet each other,

I even miss the gossiping,

That with exaggeration and censure

Spread the news and happenings of their street.

No one knows who has died anymore, who is newly born

Who has arrived and who has left.

All seal themselves up in their houses.

And behind walls

Tuned into the TV and virtual networks,

Seeking to connect with the world.

Distant from each other

In the illusion that this way

We will be safe!

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Sânia Campos - Economista com Mestrado em Educação pela UFMG. Professora da PUC-Minas, já exerceu vários cargos na Administração Pública. Residente em Belo Horizonte - MG.
  1. Antonio Ângelo

    É isto mesmo, Sânia. Triste saber que moramos em cidades em que, ao invés de nos acolher, ruas e praças se tornam locais onde mora o perigo. Andar nas madrugadas e curtir lua e estrelas, quem diria, passou a ser atividade de risco!

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