The love story behind the famous song "La Llorona"


This is a love story. A sad and true story of love.

The song “La Llorona” (the crier) -and not to be confused with the legend of La Llorona-, is a well known and traditional Mexican song of love and pain.

It became popular after the Mexican Revolution (1910) its author remains anonymous.

It’s origin comes from the Zapotecas in Oaxaca, and this is the story:

 A young man from Tehuantepec went to a party in the nearby town of Juchitan in Oaxaca. There, he met a beautiful girl that was coming out of a temple wearing a traditional embroidered dress from the area called huipil. He continuously tried to conquer the young lady until her parents finally approved, and they married. But the Mexican revolution surprised the newlyweds and before going to battle he said to her:

“I remember the day we went to the river and the flowers in the fields seemed as if they were crying. With you, the clouds in my sky are nothing, and even the sun competes with your smile.

The war is calling for me, because peace in our country has been stolen. 

I will come back to you and for our future family. I will never stop loving you in this life and in death.”

The day of his departure finally came, and as the young man painfully said goodbye to his wife  sorrow shaped as tears ran down both their cheeks. As his bride wept with painful sighs he spoke to his wife holding her hands, the same hands he used to wipe her tears as he called her “llorona” (crier) because she would not stop weeping knowing she might never see him again. 

Kisses and promises blew through the air as he swore he would come back to her in life or in death. The young bride also promised to wait for him no matter what.

And so,  he left for war but never came back. Time passed until a mutual friend of theirs came back to town and said to her:

“Bullets reached your husband creating terrible wounds making it impossible to save him. But with his last breaths he asked me to tell you this: That he will love you forever and to please forgive him” and he took from his pocket a letter for you:”

From the letter

Out from the temple you came one day llorona when I caught a glimpse of you, you were wearing a beautiful  huipil llorona that I believed you were an image of a Virgin.

The sun is born in the sky, my llorona, and in the ocean the moon, and you are born in my heart, llorona, to love you like never before.

Even if I pay with my life llorona, I will never stop loving you.

Oh my dear llorona llorona you are my love

I may be asked to stop loving you llorona, but never I will do

I sing to you, my heart is happy. But also, sometimes, when it is not possible to cry, from pain you can sing too. 

Do not cry my dear, because every day, on the horizon, I will wait for you.

We know the young widow cried and cried after receiving that letter and never remarried, waiting to be reunited with his loved one in paradise and claim his promise.

Their baby was born a week after the news, and every Nov 1st they had dinner together. A wife and a child in the land of the living and a husband in the kingdom of the dead. Until one day the great eagle took her and joined them together eternally.

Time passed and the story was written as a song that has been sung by many artists. A song full of tradition, love and sorrow that is commonly played on the Day Of The Dead.

“Out you came from a temple one day llorona

When I got a glimpse of you as you passed by


A beautiful huipil you were wearing llorona

That a Virgin I believed


Oh my dear llorona llorona

From a meadow of lilies


The one that hasn’t felt love

Doesn’t know what pain is


I don’t know what flowers have, llorona

Flower from a sacred field


That when they are moved by the wind, llorona

It seems as if they are crying


Oh my dear llorona llorona

Take me to the river


Cover me with your shawl llorona because

I am dying of coldness


Cover me with your shawl

Cover me with your shawl

Because I am so cold”

Listen to this beautiful song sung by Angelica Aguilar here

This is one of the songs on my playlist of my current work in progress. A day of the dead contemporary romance novel.

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