poesía de gotán:

La capilla blanca (1944)

The White Chapel
lyrics by Hector Marcó

In the white chapel
of a town out in the provinces
very close to a crystal clear creek,
your hands
drove me to prayer.
Your hands that used to enflame
my child’s heart,
and at the feet of Christ Our Lord
you gave me a drink
from the waters of tenderness.

Happily the moon watched us
come down the mountain
following the stars,
drinking among your goats
a little dose of love…
and today those timid bells
are dark birds
that toll from afar
the call to prayer.

Your voice died in the river,
and in the white chapel
it left an empty space…
empty, like both our souls.

Orquesta Carlos Di Sarli, canta Alberto Podestá

(Spanish original after the jump)

La capilla blanca

En la capilla blanca
de un pueblo provinciano
muy junto a un arroyuelo de cristal,
me hincaban a rezar
tus manos.
Tus manos que encendían
mi corazón de niño,
y al pie de un Santo Cristo,
las aguas del cariño
me dabas de beber.

Feliz nos vio la luna
bajar por la montaña
siguiendo las estrellas,
bebiendo entre tus cabras,
un ánfora de amor…
y hoy son aves oscuras
esas tímidas campanas
que doblan a lo lejos
el toque de oración.

Tu voz murió en el río,
y en la capilla blanca
quedó un lugar vacío…
vacío como el alma de los dos.

About Derrick Del Pilar

Born and raised in Chicago, I came to the tango while studying at the Universidad de Belgrano in Buenos Aires in 2006. In 2008 I earned my B.A. with majors in Creative Writing and Spanish & Portuguese from the University of Arizona, and in 2009 I earned an M.A. in Latin American Studies at the University of California, Berkeley. My specialty is the history & literature of early 20th century Argentina.


4 thoughts on “La capilla blanca (1944)

  1. Thanks for this one. I remember the first time I heard it. I was at a rehearsal of Orq. Gente de Tango with Hector Morano. Although I didn’t understand a word of the lyrics, I found myself with tears of emotion.

    Gente de Tango will perform tomorrow night at the milonga in La Nacional. I always ask Hector if he will be singing La capilla blanca and Dejame! no quiere verte mas.

    Posted by jantango | 04.20.2010, 12:53 PM
  2. everytime you post a new song/translation, it reaches my soul, fills my heart and sends my body to dance. Grazie mille, Derek

    Posted by sabina | 04.20.2010, 3:13 PM
  3. Wonderful many thanks

    Posted by Moustapha | 04.18.2016, 4:45 AM


  1. Pingback: Di Sarli #3: Vocals with Alberto Podestá « DDP's Favorite Tandas - 10.27.2011

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The sound files on this site are included for illustrative purposes only. Those wishing to obtain high quality versions for their personal collections should purchase commercially available copies. If you can't get to a record store in Buenos Aires, a great many tangos are available, song by song, in meticulously digitized versions from http://www.tangotunes.com/ and others can be found on the iTunes music store or Amazon (transfer quality varies widely). Though he no longer has inventory available, Michael Lavocah's superb http://milonga.co.uk/ can help you determine which CDs might be best to buy used.
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