Macario: A Story by B. Traven

We are happy to publish the full English and Spanish texts of B. Traven’s immortal story Macario. Please feel free to download, print, and scatter these pamphlets around your cities or towns in the lead up to the Dia de los Muertos celebrations. While many people in Mexico are familiar with this text, not many know it was written by a lifelong anarchist, and it should go without saying most yanquis in the US have never even heard of Macario.

As the late Stuart Christie describes the story, Macario, a poor and hungry peasant, longs for just one good meal on the Day of the Dead. After his wife cooks a turkey for him, he meets three apparitions, the Devil, God, and Death. Each asks him to share his turkey, but he refuses all except Death. In return, Death gives him a bottle of water which will heal any illness. Soon, Macario is more wealthy than the village doctor, which draws the attention of the feared Inquisition.

We hope you enjoy this simple story of one indigenous man’s inherent goodness in spite of the misery and poverty which engulfs his family. While much can be read into this tale, it is also the auto-biography of B. Traven near the end of his life, a man whom Death had spared so he might better the lives of those around him.



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