CORRIDO DE BELVEDERE
The ballad Corrido de Belvedere depicts a Mexican immigrant's disillusion with life in the United States. (Reprinted in McWilliams, 204-105.)
To earn dollars was my dream,
I bought shoes and I bought a hat
And even put on trousers.
For they told me that here the dollars
Were scattered about in heaps;
That there were girls and theaters
And there here everything was good fun.
And now I'm overwhelmed –
I am a shoemaker by trade
But here they say I'm a camel
And good only for pick and shovel.
What good is it to know my trade
If there are manufacturers by the score,
And while I make two little shoes
They turn out more than a million.
Many Mexicans don't care to speak
The language their mothers taught them
And go about saying they are Spanish
And deny their country's flag.
Some are darker than chapote
But they pretend to be Saxon;
They go about powdered to the back of the neck
And wear skirts for trousers.
The girls go about almost naked
And call la tienda "estor"
They go around with dirt-streaked legs
But with those stockings of chiffon.
Even my old women has changed on me –
She wears a bob-tailed dress of silk,
Goes about painted like a pinata
And goes at night to the dancing hall.
My kids speak perfect English
And have no use for our Spanish
They call me "fader" and don't work
And are crazy about the Charleston.
I'm tired of all this nonosense
I'm going back to Michoacan;
As a parting memory I leave the old woman
To see if someone else wants to burden himself.