Written in Brooklyn in 1976 after reading a TIME magazine article about the execution of three Basque separatists in Hoyo de Manzanares.
Winding through the hills on the road to Madrid,
The jeeps and vans came to a stop;
The morning sun had just begun
To warm the mountain tops.
Then out came the police and a hundred guns,
And three hooded, defiant young men;
The priest was there, but nobody cared,
They were following orders again.
José Humberto, you had such crazy dreams,
José Luis, open your eyes!
And, Ramón, look what’s become of you;
You had nothing to lost but your life,
Oh, you had nothing to lose but your life.
España was never a poster for you
With flamenco dancing and wine
It was filled with pain and the dark red stain
Of condemned men marching in line.
You’d be happy to know there were riots in Rome
And mobs in Belgium and France;
But in Washington, as you were shot in the sun,
A new treaty was signed for more guns and more mines,
To give Spanish Fascism a chance,
After all, executions have such romance.