JUAN CARLOS URTAZA (1982) is a Chilean writer. He lives at the 13th kilometer of the Route 7 (Carretera Austral, CH-7). He hangs out with street kids and addicts in Puerto Montt. He prefers unknown people and illiterates of good heart instead of critics and linguists.  Outstanding Super Lightweight boxer (63,500 gr.) he has published Knock Out, with the support of the National Council of the Book and Reading, and No hay mano, co-edited by Calabaza del Diablo from Chile and Vox Editores from Bahía Blanca, Argentina. 

They studied complicated careers
those men are now thriving
they don’t use words like crisis, relapse or hangover
they don’t keep sleeping pills or painkillers on their nightstands
and they ask kids
what do they want to be when they grow up

I learnt to waste my time sitting in a chair
watching the flight of an owl
over the heads of a country road
looking how nails and grass grow
or trying to aim a spit into a beer cap

I always knew why you shouldn’t ask
what do you want to be when you grow up

About that, that nobody is going to come to knock your door
neither because of work nor because of love
about that, that days go by imitating themselves slowly and heavily
getting harder like bread
in those corners where neither
laugh nor hunger arrive

where the sun leaves from the veins
of the walls
of the silence’s ink
of a solitary property on a third floor
where nobody comes sometimes a friend
from the tip of the abyss to the crack of the foot
mathematically alone
searching for salt and air

About that, that nobody is going to come when it’s late
between the squares of the parquetry
the lines of the hand
the chalk of the days
the hands of the kids on the walls

About that, that nobody is going to come when it’s late

I lived two years hanging clothes
on an imaginary little square
but the wind of the unfortunates
also dries

Because you can be happy
with little money
with little teeth
with just one woman
in the same town you were born

Translated by Carlos Soto-Román

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