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Judi Lynn

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Member since: 2002
Number of posts: 114,250

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Argentina and Chile Sing to Violeta Parra

Argentina and Chile Sing to Violeta Parra

By Maylín Vidal

Buenos Aires, Jul 20 (Prensa Latina) The pain, joy, injustice, her fears, feelings that Violeta parra shed through her songs, were extolled here in a homage that twinned again Argentina and Chile in an emotive evening.

The majestic theater Colon was witness to a historic concert in tribute to this great Chilean artist on the centennial of her birth, a magical night in a full theater with President Michelle Bachelet in the main balcony.

Two peoples so linked to the life of Parra got together to revere her extraortdinary art, one night, especially the eve, had as main protagonists her grandson and daughter, Angel and Javiera Parra, with the emotions on the skin.

'It hurts to admit that my homeland, for many years, turned its back on her, even when she was alive, her courage, rebelliousness, her way of creating without concessions, caused bitterness. Afterward, the dictatorship tried to deny her, hide her, break her', said Bachelet, main promoter of the tribute to the author.


Lyrics of one of her famous songs:

Translation Notes:
1) Some inversion in this song, but thats nothing new.
2) Title: The title of this song is rather symbolic as it imitates the common Biblical form of thanking God in Spanish. As such I imitated the common form of doing this in English, Thanks be to God, and translated the title to Thanks be to Life.

Gracias a la Vida -- Thanks be to Life
Written by: Violeta Parra
Translated by: gift_of_song

Gracias a la Vida que me ha dado tanto
---Thanks be to Life that has given me so much
me dio dos luceros que cuando los abro
---It gave two bright stars that when opened*
perfecto distingo lo negro del blanco
---perfectly distinguish the black from the white
y en el alto cielo su fondo estrellado
---and the starry depths of the far off high sky
y en las multitudes el hombre que yo amo.
---and in the multitudes the man that I love.

Gracias a la vida, que me ha dado tanto
---Thanks be to Life that has given me so much
me ha dado el oido que en todo su ancho
---It gave me an ear that within its width
graba noche y dia grillos y canarios,
---records night and day crickets and canaries,
martillos, turbinas, ladridos, chubascos,
---hammers, turbines, barking, rainstorms,
y la voz tan tierna de mi bien amado.
---and the oh so tender voice of my dearly beloved.

Gracias a la Vida que me ha dado tanto
---Thanks be to Life that has given me so much
me ha dado el sonido y el abedecedario
---It has given me sound and the alphabet
con él las palabras que pienso y declaro
---with it the words that I think and declare
madre, amigo, hermano y luz alumbrando,
---mother, friend, brother and shining light,
la ruta del alma del que estoy amando.
---the route to the soul of the one I am in love with.

Gracias a la Vida que me ha dado tanto
---Thanks be to Life that has given me so much
me ha dado la marcha de mis pies cansados
---It has given me the march of my tired feet
con ellos anduve ciudades y charcos,
---with them I walked through cities and puddles,
playas y desiertos, montañas y llanos,
---beaches and deserts, mountains and plains,
y la casa tuya, tu calle y tu patio.
---and your house, your street and your courtyard.

Gracias a la Vida que me ha dado tanto
---Thanks be to Life that has given me so much
me dio el corazón que agita su marco
---It has given me a heart that speeds its beating
cuando miro el fruto del cerebro humano,
---when I look at the fruit of the human mind,**
cuando miro el bueno tan lejos del malo,
---when I look at the good which is so far from the evil,
cuando miro el fondo de tus ojos claros.
---when I look into the depths of your clear eyes.

Gracias a la Vida que me ha dado tanto
---Thanks be to Life that has given me so much
me ha dado la risa y me ha dado el llanto,
---It has given me laughter and it has given me sorrow
así yo distingo dicha de quebranto
---in that way I can distinguish happiness from grief
los dos materiales que forman mi canto
---the two materials that form my song
y el canto de ustedes que es el mismo canto
---and your song which is the same song
y el canto de todos que es mi propio canto.
---and the song of everyone which is my own song.

Gracias a la Vida que me ha dado tanto . . .
---Thanks be to Life that has given me so much . . .

*Luceros: in Spanish this is an extremely poetic way to say "eyes," because it compares them to bright stars.
**I don't know how common this expression is in English so I wrote this note: when she says fruit, she's talking about the accomplishments or results that have come from the human mind.


~ ~ ~


Violeta del Carmen Parra Sandoval (4 October 1917 – 5 February 1967) was a Chilean composer, songwriter, folklorist, ethnomusicologist and visual artist. She pioneered the "Chilean New Song", the Nueva canción chilena, a renewal and a reinvention of Chilean folk music which would extend its sphere of influence outside Chile, becoming acknowledged as "The Mother of Latin American folk". In 2011 Andrés Wood directed a biopic about her, titled Violeta Went to Heaven (Spanish: Violeta se fue a los cielos).


~ ~ ~

VIOLETA PARRA - Gracias a la vida ( Thanks to life) ORIGINAL version

~ ~ ~

Gracias a la vida, sung by Mercedes Sosa, also an incredible musical force from the same era, from Argentina, despised by the military dictatorship in that country for her political beliefs.

Her Wikipedia:


last updated:

How can isolated and vulnerable rural communities prepare for catastrophic natural events and become more resilient in the face of climate change? This episode of Aid Zone takes us to Bolivia, where an EU-funded project is helping traditional healers share and enrich their ancestral knowledge.

When floods and other disasters hit isolated rural communities in Bolivia, traditional medicine is often all they have in terms of health care.

Over twenty indigenous communities are regularly flooded in the Amazon basin of Bolivia. That’s the case of Capaina, near San Buenaventura, along the river Beni. About 25 families of the Tacana ethnic group live there. Natural disasters can isolate communities for months, and traditional medicine then turns out to be the most effective first response to diseases.

Doña Juanita and Doña Antonia are curanderas, or local healers: they know how to use plants to look after people.


FARC to formally announce political party on September 1

written by Adriaan Alsema July 24, 2017

The FARC said Monday that it will have completed its transition from Marxist guerrilla group to political party on September 1, the day the demobilized rebels will announce the name of their party.

Over the past few days, demobilized guerrillas across the country have taken part in consults with the FARC leadership to come up with a name for the new party and an election program with which they will take part in the 2018 elections.

At a press conference, FARC leaders Luciano Marin, also known as “Ivan Marquez,” Luis Antonio Lozada, a.k.a. “Carlos Antonio Lozada” and Francy Maria Orrego, a.k.a. “Erika Montero” announced that the FARC has been holding internal consults to define their election program and the name of their political party.

. . .

The last time they tried to, in 1985 and under the banner of the Patriotic Union, thousands of party members and supporters of the FARC’s political participation were assassinated by paramilitary groups and state officials.


'Tail-Standing' Sperm Whales Snooze in Stunning Photo

By Mindy Weisberger, Senior Writer | July 24, 2017 06:12am ET

- click for image -


A photographer recently snapped an image showing a group of whales sleeping vertically.
Credit: Franco Banfi/Solent News & Photo Agency

Sleeping dogs lie, but sleeping whales … "stand" on their tails? That was the scene recently glimpsed by a diver in the Caribbean, at least, when the photographer encountered a group of sperm whales napping together, all of them suspended tails-down in the water.

Photographer Franco Banfi was free diving — underwater diving without a breathing apparatus — on Jan. 28 off the coast of Dominica, an island in the Caribbean Sea between Martinique and Guadalupe, when he spied six still and silent sperm whales drifting in their upright postures at a depth of around 65 feet (20 meters).

Researchers first saw this unusual sleep behavior in sperm whales in 2008, describing it in a study published in January of that year in the journal Current Biology. The scientists in that study found that sperm whales dozed in this upright drifting posture for about 10 to 15 minutes at a time, and the whales did not breathe or move at all during their naps, the study authors reported. [Sleep Tight! Snoozing Animals Gallery]


Mexico murders up with deadliest month in at least 20 years

Christopher Sherman, Associated Press Updated 11:05 pm, Friday, July 21, 2017

MEXICO CITY (AP) — Mexico's spiraling violence reached new heights with 2,234 murders in June, the country's deadliest month in at least 20 years, according to government data.

Killings rose in states ranging from the tourist haven of Baja California Sur to the Gulf coast state of Veracruz and even in Mexico City, long considered a relative oasis from drug gang violence. For the first six months of 2017, authorities nationwide recorded 12,155 homicide investigations, or 31 percent more than the 9,300 during the same period last year.

Just Friday, the same day the report was released, a marine and four other people were killed when armed forces moved against the leader of the principal fuel-theft ring in the central state of Puebla.

Four of the dead were alleged members of "Los Bukanas," a violent gang that sells gasoline stolen through illegal taps in the government oil company's pipelines. It's a business that has been estimated to cost the government $1 billion annually and which has grown increasingly violent as authorities try to control it.


Mexico launches pioneering scheme to insure its coral reef

Hotels and local government in Cancún will pay premiums, and insurance industry will pay out if the reef is damaged by storms

Fiona Harvey Environment correspondent
Thursday 20 July 2017 11.25 EDT

A stretch of coral reef off Mexico is the testing ground for a new idea that could protect fragile environments around the world: insurance.

The reef, off the coast of Cancún, is the first to be protected under an insurance scheme by which the premiums will be paid by local hotels and government, and money to pay for the repair of the reef will be released if a storm strikes.

Coral reefs offer a valuable buffer against storm damage from waves but their condition has deteriorated in recent years, the result of human exploitation and destruction of the reefs, as well as climate change, plastic waste and the acidification of the oceans.

Under the Cancún insurance policy, pioneered by the insurance company Swiss Re and the Nature Conservancy, a US environmental charity, local organisations dependent on tourism will pay in to a collective pot likely to amount to between $1m (£770,000) and $7.5m for the insurance premiums on the policy, and a 40 mile (60km) stretch of reef and connected beach will be monitored. If any destructive storms damage the reef system, the insurer will pay out sums likely to be $25m to $70m in any given year.


Mexico City floating farms, chefs team up to save tradition

Lisa Martine Jenkins, Associated Press

Updated 11:37 pm, Wednesday, July 19, 2017

MEXICO CITY (AP) — At dawn in Xochimilco, home to Mexico City's famed floating gardens, farmers in muddied rain boots squat among rows of beets as a group of chefs arrive to sample sweet fennel and the pungent herb known as epazote.

By dinnertime some of those greens will be on plates at an elegant bistro 12 miles (20 kilometers) to the north, stewed with black beans in a $60 prix-fixe menu for well-heeled diners.

Call it floating-farm-to-table: A growing number of the capital's most in-demand restaurants are incorporating produce grown at the gardens, or chinampas, using ancient cultivation techniques pioneered hundreds of years ago in the pre-Columbian era.

While sourcing local ingredients has become fashionable for many top chefs around the globe, it takes on additional significance in Xochimilco (so-chee-MIL-co), where a project linking chinampa farmers with high-end eateries aims to breathe life and a bit of modernity into a fading and threatened tradition.


(18 photos with article.)

How the dark webs gunrunners covertly ship US weapons to Europe

20 July 2017

By Timothy Revell

After a mass shooting at a McDonald’s in Munich in 2016, authorities said that the gunman probably purchased his weapon on the dark web. But this was just speculation, as very little is actually known about the sale of weapons on anonymous marketplaces in this subset of the internet.

Now, a report published by the RAND Corporation provides the first detailed glimpse into this hidden world. It is “a good overview of the current situation”, says Julio Hernandez-Castro at the University of Kent.

The report reveals an alarming pattern: the majority of vendors are based in the US and are willing to ship worldwide, with Europe the biggest source of profit. Lax gun laws in the US are undermining stricter rules elsewhere.

And while absolute numbers are still small – accounting for less than 1 per cent of items sold on the dark web – capabilities go far beyond simply putting a gun in the mail. From manuals on how to create explosives to detailed instructions on how to disassemble and ship a gun to various overseas destinations, the information and technology available to purchase is well-placed to facilitate lone-wolf attacks.

Anonymous marketplaces
The dark web is a subset of the internet that requires specific software to access so that users can remain anonymous. Not all of the items for sale in dark web marketplaces are illegal, but the promise of anonymity makes it easier to subvert the law. “It could revolutionise how normal people purchase firearms. It’s a game changer,” says Giacomo Persi Paoli, lead author of the report.


Salem Memorializes Those Killed During Witch Trials

July 19, 20176:01 PM ET

The city of Salem, Mass., has opened a memorial to commemorate the people who were convicted and killed during its notorious series of "witch trials" in 1692.

The memorial stands at the site where 19 innocent women and men were hanged in a series of mass executions. According to the city, the memorial opened on the 325th anniversary of the first of three mass executions at the site, when five women were killed: Sarah Good, Elizabeth Howe, Susannah Martin, Rebecca Nurse and Sarah Wildes.

Andrea Shea of member station WBUR attended the ceremony at Proctor's Ledge, and said Salem residents and descendants of those killed gathered to pay their respects.

"We should not be here today. We should not be here dedicating this memorial and setting aside this small patch of rocky earth," the Rev. Jeffrey Barz-Snell of the First Church in Salem told the assembled crowd, Shea reported. "We should not be here commemorating the heartbreaking and tragic loss of life, people who were falsely and unjustly accused of being in the snare of the devil."


Corporate Media Largely Silent on Trumps Civilian Death Toll in Iraq

JULY 19, 2017


Earlier this week, human rights group Amnesty International issued a lengthy report accusing US-backed forces of “repeated violations of international humanitarian law, some of which may amount to war crimes,” in Mosul, Iraq, causing the deaths of at least 3,700 civilians. Neither this report, nor the broader issue of the civilian toll in the US war against ISIS, has come close to penetrating US corporate media.

The only major radio or television outlet to report on Amnesty’s claims was NPR (7/12/17). While traditional print outlets, such as the New York Times and Washington Post, did run Reuters (7/11/17) and AP(7/12/17) articles, respectively, on the report, neither covered it themselves. Neither Amnesty’s charges, nor the broader issue of civilian deaths in Mosul, garnered any coverage in television news, with no mention on ABC, NBC, CBS, CNN or MSNBC.

The expulsion of ISIS from Mosul by the US-led coalition did receive coverage, but the US role in killing civilians was uniformly ignored.

CBS News’ reports (6/25/17, 7/4/17, 7/9/17) made no mention of US responsibility for civilian deaths, referring only vaguely to “a rising civilian death toll” and “whole neighborhoods” that “cease to exist.” The role of US bombing role in that rising death toll or those no-longer-existing neighborhoods was never mentioned.

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