Alert: We are in Beta until mid 2022. When you see something not working as expected, please have a look at known bugs in development and/or drop us a line. Thank you!

Tinta roja

This page has not yet been reviewed and approved!
Jump to: navigation, search

Tinta roja (Red Ink) is the title of a tango written by Cátulo Castillo in 1941. The music was composed by Sebastián Piana.




Sebastián Piana

Year of composition:



Lyrics writer(s):

Cátulo Castillo

The poet recalls old times that, together with love and youth, have gone far away, never to return.


At the moment, there are no recordings for this song stored in the TangoWiki. If you have sources, add a new recording.


Spanish: Tinta roja

tinta roja en el gris
del ayer...

Tu emoción
de ladrillo feliz
sobre mi callejón
con un borrón
pintó la esquina...

Y al botón
que en el ancho de la noche
puso el filo de la ronda
como un broche...

Y aquel buzón carmín,
y aquel fondín
donde lloraba el tano
su rubio amor lejano
que mojaba con bon vin.

¿Dónde estará mi arrabal?
¿Quién se robó mi niñez?
¿En qué rincón, luna mía,
volcás como entonces
tu clara alegría?

Veredas que yo pisé,
malevos que ya no son,
bajo tu cielo de raso
trasnocha un pedazo
de mi corazón.

tinta roja en el gris
del ayer...

de mi sangre infeliz
que vertí en el malvón
de aquel balcón
que la escondía...

Yo no sé
si fue negro de mis penas
o fue rojo de tus venas
mi sangría...

Por qué llegó y se fue
tras del carmín
y el gris,
fondín lejano
donde lloraba un tano
sus nostalgias de bon vin.

English: Red Ink

red ink in
yesterday’s gray...

Your thrill
of happy brick
on my alley
with a blur
painted the corner...

And the guard
that in the wide night
placed his rounds’ sharp edge
like a clasp...

And that carmine mailbox
and that fondín[1]
where the Italian cried
over his faraway blonde love
that he drenched in bon vin[2]

Where is my arrabal?
Who stole my childhood?
In which corner, oh moon of mine,
do you pour like then
your clear joy?

Sidewalks I’ve stepped on,
malevos that are no more,
beneath your satin sky
a piece of my heart
stays up all night.

red ink
on yesterday’s gray.

of my miserable blood
that I’ve poured on the geranium
on that balcony
that hid her...

I don’t know
if I was the black of my sorrows
or if my bleeding
was the red of your veins.

Why did she come and leave
chasing the carmine
and the gray,
distant fondín
where the Italian would cry
his nostalgies of bon vin.


  1. fondín: derogatory term for a cheap, low-rank tavern.
  2. bon vin: Lit. ’good wine’ (In French in the original text), it actually designates a cheap sort of wine. .

Further links