Mujer de Pies Salvajes


Volume 8, Issue 05
March 31, 2023

The Ciguapa, is a humanoid figure of a woman, with long hair that caresses her curvy hips and gets entangled with her twisted feet; feet that face east even when she walks west. The direction of her feet confuse the men that hunt her. In the Dominican Republic, the legends of la Ciguapa vary from time to time, some are from the nineteen hundreds and some date back to pre-colonial times, even though there are no Taino artifacts that represent her.

Reconstructed and adapted all throughout Latin America, this mythological creature lives on in urban legends today. La Ciguapa is sexualized by all, the legend goes that she would seduce Spanish men, lure them into her cave and take their lives, her footsteps untraceable. La Ciguapa represents women’s feminine colonial resistance, seductive cleverness and predatorial motherhood.

This contemporary story is given in the context of colonial times, when the conquistadors arrived in La Hispaniola. La Ciguapa lured them into the campo and killed them. This modern mythological story represents the battle between races, people of the land and the people that came from the sea.

The moon watches her
Face looking west
Feet looking east
The shadow of the pino criollo1 hides her
Woman of the night
Mermaid of the land.

Absent and elsewhere,
Not animal
Bare, piel canela2 ,
Hair negro asavache3 ,
naked ankles,
Beauty or beautiful?

Cacao Plants whisper,
Shy savage of el campo
Seduce him with your howls.
Luring him into the night…
Stars scream,
Español maldito,
subjugated to her kingdom
Reparation of her harm,
Unfinished struggles,
Imperfect conditions,
Feeding of colonial flesh,
Drinking of predatorial blood,
White washing of the land,
For a moment.

Spanish Version:

Al llegar la noche ellas toman control
Control de cultivos de cacao.
Donde el conquistador maldito es subyugado a su reino,
El olor marrón permanece en su cabello,
Pelo negro asavache,
Pelo largo arrastrado,
Arrastrando ese aroma por todo el campo.
Criatura de piel canela,
Criatura de pies descalzos y doblados,
borrando sus huellas,
Que marcan el sentido opuesto.
Mujer salvaje pero amable.
Mujer ágil y sencilla.
Mujer nocturna,
que se guía por la luz de la luna llena.

La sombra la esconde,
Sus huellas se oyen.
Estrellas gritan,
Astros miran,
Toma de su sangre colonial,
Come de su carne predatorial,
Curando de la herida historial,
cadaver de lo colonial,
Por solo un momento.

  1. Endemic Pine tree. ↩︎
  2. Vernacular way to reference brown skin. ↩︎
  3. Vernacular definition of the darkest shade of hair, derived from black amber. ↩︎

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Volume 8, Issue 05
March 31, 2023