King Quake



Super quake, Saint Tremor, King Tremor,

Great Earthfreak. Riftmaker.

Great splitter, terror of the Cuauhtémoc

Earthly indigestion, urban rattle.


Thirty years ago, in Eighty-five,

From Acapulco to the District

We felt your fury, O King of the Quakes.


Today along the city streets

Between car and tortilla fumes,

The rumour spreads in hushed voices.


Science and stars equally foretell

Of stone and steel a great storm.

Your return is near.


King Quake, King Quake.


Go down the streets, ring the alarms,

Watch the needles: eight-point-six!


King Quake, King Quake.


Unruly City grotesque to the brim

Overthrow who you wish, enforce your law.


Many of us City dwellers live contentedly

In Juárez, Cuauhtémoc, and downtown,

But we know, we know.


Rattle, rattle, King Quake.

Rumour has it of your return to the City.

So feared and real is your law,

As an ancient deity.

Let the earth’s foundations tremble
At the loud roar of the Quake.

Poem by Andrés Rozada.

Two years ago today we lost our beloved son-in-law Andrés Rozada. A bright architect, he was a young man of many talents. He wrote. Short stories, a few poems as the one above. A mix of genres. Fantasy was one. One story, “El miniaturista”, reminds me of Borges. Yes, Borges! Our daughter Virginie has worked on those texts, compiled them, edited them and a book has just been published.

AV Historiasdeunplomero

“Stories of a plumber”. An architect, Andrés called himself a “plumber”. Here is the translation of the text on the front page:

“Last-minute deviations. Lost calls on the phone. No change at the 7-Eleven, closed streets, no coriander at the main taco joint… Life is full of small set-backs.” Andrés Rozada Diego Fernández.

If anyone wants to read the original Spanish text of the poem, called “Sismo Rey”, pray say so, I’ll post it in comments.

The book will be presented tonight at the Bucardón, on Donato Guerra 1, Historical centre, Mexico city. There will be a crowd of friends and family. There will be beer and tears and laughter and beer and laughter. If you’re in Mexico, feel free to drop by. If you can’t make it, your visit here is greatly appreciated.

Illustrations (c) Ivan Zaragoza.

45 thoughts on “King Quake

  1. I am glad to hear that there was an opportunity to create a loving, meaningful tribute to your son-in-law Andrés. I am also glad there will be an event to present the book. Humans do well with ceremonies to recognize, remember, share with each other, and say goodbye. And of course, to drink beer.

  2. Deux ans déjà. But some pain doesn’t diminish no matter how much time passes. Much love to you and your family, Brian. The book is a magnificent tribute.

  3. What a wonderful way to keep his memory alive! A happy/sad occasion … wish your daughter the best of luck with the book for me! Had I been near Mexico City at the time, I would have dropped in to share a cerveza!

  4. I will check Andrés Rozada’s book 🤓 such a beautiful legacy…one of many I’m sure Brian 💙 sending you and your loved ones all good things ☺️💫 peace and joy 💓 Hedy

    • Thank you Hedy. The book is not quite in the market yet. I guess the next step is Amazon. But if you give me your address, I’ll try to send it to you. (Use my e-mail, it’s on my Gravatar) ❤

    • Thank you Libre. Not sure one ever recovers… 🙂 Hopefully yes. In the meantime, the publication of Andrés’ major works is a great achievement. I had to translate “Sismo Rey” to English for that post. Glad you liked it.

    • Thank you Paul. The thing is that through sheer willpower, our daughter has managed to turn this event into a fantastic celebration. The book is out, and it is a great book. Eases the pain.
      Again thank you for your kind words.

    • The book came out very nice. Hard cover and all. They hardly bind in hard cover any more. And the poem is very powerful. Particularly in Mexico city which has terrifying earthquakes. (I knew I had to translate this particular text to English for you guys. Glad you liked it Robin.

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