National Geographic News


Spanish conquistadores built a church on the ancient pyramid of Tlachihualtépetl in central Mexico. Though the pyramid is the largest man-made structure by volume in the world, it is overshadowed by the volcano Popocatépetl. The site inspired the Cuban poet José María Heredia to write the famous poem "En el Teocalli de Cholula" in 1820, while in exile in Mexico. The poem is a meditation on the impermanence of human deeds when compared to nature.

Photograph by Sarah Leen

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