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Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Gilberto Gil - "Procissão": What a beautiful song. It's dawn on a Northeast village in Brazil, where Christians are carrying not only an image of a crucified Christ on their shoulders, but also in their hearts. Gilberto Gil doesn't trash Catholic Religion nor makes fun of it; he uses is as a parable to compare the pain of waiting for something that will never come with unheard prayers. All inside a beautiful piece of popular music recorded in 1967.

Olha lá vai passando a procissão
Se arrastando que nem cobra pelo chão
As pessoas que nela vão passando
Acreditam nas coisas lá do céu
As mulheres cantando tiram versos
Os homens escutando tiram o chapéu
Eles vivem penando aqui na terra
Esperando o que Jesus prometeu
E Jesus prometeu vida melhor
Pra quem vive nesse mundo sem amor
Só depois de entregar o corpo ao chão
Só depois de morrer neste sertão
Eu também tô do lado de Jesus
Só que acho que ele se esqueceu
De dizer que na terra a gente tem
De arranjar um jeitinho pra viver
Muita gente se arvora a ser Deus
E promete tanta coisa pro sertão
Que vai dar um vestido pra Maria
E promete um roçado pro João
Entra ano, sai ano, e nada vem
Meu sertão continua ao deus-dará
Mas se existe Jesus no firmamento
Cá na terra isto tem que se acabar

Look at the procession go by
Pulling itself like a snake over the ground
The people who are passing
Believe in something beyond the sky
The women are singing verses
The men listening take of their hats
They live in penance here on earth
Waiting for what Jesus promised
Jesus promised a better life
To those living in this world without love
But only after their body is delivered to the ground
Only after dying in the Sertao
I’m on Jesus’ side too
But I think he has forgotten
To speak to the earth that these people live on
And tell it to arrange a way for them to live
Because so many people are flying up to God
Who promises so many things for the Sertao
That he will give a dress to Maria
And promises a farm for Joao
Year after year nothing comes
And the Sertao continues to give to God
But if Jesus exists up in heaven
Then here on earth this has to stop

Available on the CD Minha Historia (Polygram, 1993)