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The Mockingbird


Cien up close IIOn the 100 peso bill there is some very tiny print that to the naked eye looks likes artistic squiggles.





Cien up closerIf you enlarge the print to the point where you can actually read the words, you find that it is really a poem about the Mockingbird.





The poem reads:

Amo el canto de zenzontle
Pájaro de cuatrocientas voces,
Amo el color del jade
Y el enervante perfume de las flores,
Pero más amo a mi hermano: el hombre.

Which translated means:

I love the song of the mockingbird
Bird of four hundred voices,
I love the color of the jadestone
And the enervating perfume of flowers,
But more than all I love my brother: man.

The poem was written by Nezahualcoyotl (1402-1472), an Acolua philosopher, poet and ruler.

Nezahualcoyotl pronounced [nesawaɬˈkojoːtɬ], meaning "Coyote in fast" or "Coyote who Fasts") was a philosopher, warrior, architect, poet and ruler of the city-state of Texcoco in pre-Columbian Mexico. Unlike other high-profile Mexican figures from the century preceding the Spanish Conquest, Nezahualcoyotl was not an Aztec; his people were the Acolhua, another Nahuan people settled in the eastern part of the Valley of Mexico, settling on the eastern side of Lake Texcoco.  Source:

One Comment leave one →
  1. 31/01/2011 16:32

    Hey Barry,

    This is the actual first time I have commented on a blog – way too busy still in the working world, I guess. But I am beginning to feel blogging has some business applications. Only you would find the fine print on a peso and then tell the tale.

    On a more mundane note, it is supposed to be -18 here tomorrow, 11 degrees now. Does you “magic jack” still work? Or is blogging the only way to contact you? We are planning to be in Cancun in late February…


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