26.9.13

583b - The visit




The passage of time had burdened them with years. Years, by a strange mechanism, push more quickly as time advances.

Now, almost elderly, they only had each other and it seemed they did not need anything else.

They had had three children who had filled them with happiness, at least for a long time, they believed to remember.

Now they had a visit.

Eduardo seemed to be the most normal one. He had left the house quite soon. He had married a stewardess. They travelled a lot. They did not know where he was living. They occasionally received a postcard with a strange address which they did not understand. They believed to remember their son had studied something of a very high level. They did not live in Spain. They came quite recently, didn’t they? They said to themselves. Of course. And this “of course” was slightly obvious.

The visit was punctual. It had appeared, without a previous warning, a spring morning. Maybe it was that Thursday when the people from the Social Assistance brought us the little device with the button to press in case something happens to us, they said. But the important thing is that it was punctual.

Magdalena, their daughter, the one in the middle of the three children, had also studied. She studied something related to Arts. They remembered this clearly since they always had their house full of extravagant visits and, what mattered the most, the whole house was always untidy and full of painting cans and strange pictures.

Magdalena, did not give any signs of life. It was said she was abroad. People who think badly said she was working in a cabaret and there were some others who thought even worse.

Magdalena sent a check to the bank very now and then. But they did not realize it.

They were not interested in television since a long time ago. They said it was loaded by the demon. A curious expression, anyone else would say the devil. But they had the opinion that the demon walks freely. If they turned on the radio was, particularly, to be accompanied by the background noise. They were not interested in news either. Some adverts attracted their attention if they had catchy music.

But they had got used to the morning visit. They had got on well with one another. So much that shortly before it arrived they turned off the radio. They did not want interferences.

Anselmo was the younger child. They were greatly upset when he told them he was a homosexual. As years went on their grief had been mitigated. The loss of their memory had helped them a lot. When he arrived home with his new male couple, they received him nicely and congratulated him for having so many friends.

Anselmo visited them more often. He tried to take care of them. He did not do it well, he did not have the time. The nail-sculpturing salon which he ran took him much time.

But the visit was punctual. Constant. And it was the joy of this nice elderly couple. It did not stay for a long time, but the time it stayed…

It was the fresh air in the morning.

They shared their food. And they played to take it out one another. It was a perfect loving triangle.

When the autumn was about to finish, the days became more unpleasant. And winter was near.

The visit was called Ramón. I had not told you before, had I?
At present, the nice elderly couple, in their more lucid moments started to be afraid about Ramón, what it could happen if Ramón did not come back anymore.

They were afraid that Ramón, the sparrow, the little sparrow could not survive the harsh winter that it was supposed to come.

And if they had had the television set connected, the news would have confirmed them that the hardest winter of the last 12 years was coming.



· · ·
583b·INT037·130925 · La visita ©2007 
707'070609-Granada-1810-Ramón el gorrión-w ©2007
· · ·

English version by AiYiYi

19.1.13

549b - Alka, the one from the market


translated by my friend AiYiYi


As every week, she came to Split market at dawn. As every week, she came to her fixed place in that tree-lined square where the echoes of tragedy could be hardly heard among the plane tree sheets. To the square, as for her, the echoes still resounded in her eardrums, and also deep inside in her soul.

Time is a great healer, they said. White lies, they say. Time is not a great healer, it only darkens wounds, covers them with a thick layer which make them invisible to others … and they sting deep inside. Sometimes, in her often insomnia she doubted about time. It was a concept she did not understand and she wondered about the necessary amount of exact time, the precise time needed to maintain a minimum hope.

When she looked at her splendid products from her vegetable garden she couldn’t help thinking they had been watered with blood, lots of blood, her family blood. Red, bright red. And what about the smell? For her, they smelt of dynamite. Her eyes still smelt the dynamite from all the houses in the village knocked down to avoid being occupied by the enemy. But what enemies? She wondered, a few days ago all of them were friends, relatives… But everything smelt of dynamite then. And even though her clients appreciated her products, she knew they came from a poisonous soil.

Near the village, unnoticed by the tourists, some white limestones rested, as all the soil was limy there. They were surrounded by a light wired fence. The souls, victims from a ferocious fratricidal war did not rest under them. She did not know who rested there. Nobody knew it. But she knew that somewhere, in a similar place with a white stone on them Branimir and Držimir lay buried, their souls wouldn’t rest, as rest was impossible. Twenty one and twenty three years old, without a future. She also knew she did not have a place to take flowers to her children. What an irony! Her children’s names meant the one who protects peace and the one who keeps peace. Their father, Damir, he who gives peace had named them this way when future was only a promise.

Now, Alka, strength was her name, couldn’t even pray for their eternal rest at church; another victim of the dynamite or the bombs or any other similar thing, it did not matter to her.

And in Split market, while Jadrolinja ferries went continuously in and out , breaking the green jade water from the Adriatic harbor, spewing by their mouths people from all over the world, she looked at her goods, the fruit of her pain.

She was sorrowful flesh, the same as her church was sorrowful stone. Time is a great healer, they said. But it was not true.

And tourists, living unaware of time, a week is not time enough.


Alka: strength, person of a great fortitude.
Damir: To give peace.
Branimir: he who protects peace.
Držimir: he who keeps peace.





· · ·
549b·INT036·130119 · Alka, the one from the market ©2013  
712120613-018-Croacia-Alka, la del mercado-©2012
· · ·

28.10.12

531b - Sitting watching lighthouses





He had spent more than half of his life watching lighthouses. Invariably, he sat there staring at a lighthouse wherever it was. There was always one since he programmed all his travels inexcusably along the coast, any coast. He sat there gazing at the lighthouse and where the lighthouse was looking at. It was all about looks.

He liked lighthouses. Their shapes and colours, as all of them presented different colours.
He liked all of them without minding their height or building technical details. He said everything had their beautiful side, the side of their look. 

Now sitting on the sharp point of a small cape, tied to its rocks with his feet seeming to be molten with that sixty million year limestone, he was watching his lighthouses, one of them out of the corner of his eye on his left.  Another one, in front of him, 1,079 nautical miles far away and the farthest one visible for 6, 479 nautical miles. He preferred to talk in miles, though he had always moved in kilometers in land.

He watched them so much that he discovered their secret. They talked to one another. He told me this the time I was sitting next to him while huge six-meter waves  passed over our feet, over our feet not under them. He was stuck to the cape, I was clung to him. The wind buffeting both of us.  The foam licking us.

The lighthouse on the left, a third of mile Northwest emitted incandescent flashes from its thirty meter height with a strange formula, a period of 0.4 + < 2.1 > + 0.4 + < 7.1 > = 10. He knew what it meant. I didn’t.  He also knew the horrors happened at its feet in an uncivil war. So did I.

The other one, located on a small island nearby a little more than a mile of distance, was very sad since it had been beheaded and downgraded as a beacon. Even so, it proudly flashed in a one plus two pattern white flashes every twenty one seconds… the same as the soul weight… they say. And I say that for me it will never be a beacon, it will be a lighthouse looking at us from its 39 meters above sea level. It will be caressed by white foams from blue waves the days the South wind blows until the endless hourglass finishes all its grains.

And the last, the furthest one 8.2 nautical miles far away communicated with whoever that wanted to see it, occulting three times every sixteen seconds. Visible for 17 nautical miles, it doubled the horizon line appearing at dawn. Sixteen meter high is not too much to be proud but adding the cliff where it stands on, it reaches 60 meters high and this makes to have been recited among the capes by schoolchildren of long ago when capes and gulfs were recited… and so were litanies.  Ora pro nobis peccatoribus.

Up to there, everything was normal. A story of lighthouses and about a lover of lighthouses.

His name was Anselmo. I had met him several times, sunny days always, when I was keen on walking that beautiful route of the only Cantabrian city which looks South. It was a route very frequented any time of the day. For some people, it was their heart attack route. They had been prescribed to walk and so they did.

One day I decided to walk along that area at night. I wanted to take some pictures with the beaches lights being prominent. The area I am referring to is the splendid promenade mentioned above, which leads to a small cape, a “minor” cape. I was carrying a small torch to help the faint light of the first quarter moon strongly fighting against some brief clouds. As I was getting near the cape, I thought to perceive a feeble luminescence similar to the one glowworms emit. I lasted  hardly anything to confirm my intuition. It was him! Anselmo! I can’t specify the exact duration of hardly anything. I would swear it is only some seconds. I don’t know how many.

He also recognized me in the twilight. He recognized, even without seeing it, the gesture of worry in my face. He showed no surprise to see me there, so late when shades had taken possession of the rocks. I was relieved when he started to talk. As a spring… his words flowed.

He explained to me that at that precise moment  he was communicating with some Galician lighthouses. The Touriñán lighthouse was complaining about the fact that nobody knew it was him the one situated in the most western point  where the flat world ended, and Hades started at its feet. Cape Vilán lighthouse was telling him, as it were live, that he was attending a shipwreck, where fortunately there were no casualties. Anselmo digressed in order to remember me the famous “Serpent” shipwreck which left just there 173 salted dreams sleeping, near those huge granitic boulders. 173 souls sleeping their eternal sleep watching strong Northwest winds and storms.

He confessed without blushing he had a feverish activity with a great many lighthouses during long dark nights when the moon did not distract their communication. While he was talking to me, he constantly interrupted with news from other beacons. Anselmo kept up a love triangle with all Galician lighthouses and with those of the French Bretagne, but he did not mind keeping contact from time to time with any other one from any coast, and without considering any distance. Seemingly, the Earth curvature was not an obstacle. He played on words and he told me he loved Faro lighthouse, that brought him recent stories from Ilha Formosa. He supposed I knew “El Algarve” geography.

A strange feeling came over me. Very strange. It was almost all of a sudden. It came over when my attention to Anselmo’s pleasant talk waned. I don’t know if I was being the object of a hallucination or any paranormal phenomenon but I thought to understand some messages from a land-end cape. I don’t know if Fisterra in Saint James Way or Finisterre in the French Bretagne were talking to me. I even perceived some interferences from Maspalomas lighthouse. I looked at my feet. I had the feeling they were getting stuck to the ground. I looked at Anselmo’s feet. They were really molten with that sixty million year limestone. I paid more attention. I did not perceive any movement on his legs. His trousers were not blown by the wind. His torso did not turn around, his arms did not move. I started suspecting Anselmo was becoming petrified. A ridiculous supposition but a supposition. I looked at him in the eye. His eyes sparkled a strange light very bright… flashing and lighting the horizon. I did not stay there to count the frequency.

                    Footnotes:
                                    Cabo Mayor and Cabo de Ajo, with their lighthouses, are Cantabrian recited capes.
                                    El Cabo Menor was not recited.
                                    Isla de Mouro’s lighthouse will always be a lighthouse, even if it is a beacon.



*
Second Prize
First Short Story Contest
Shipwrecked Association

*
531b·INT034·121028 · Sitting watching lighthouses ©2012  
402110418-Santander-Isla de Mouro-130-w ©2011
*

14.2.12

501b - Scavengers





                                   tiempos de incertidumbre 
times of uncertainty                                   

                                   naufragios cada día
every day shipwrecks                                   

                                   mientras
                                   los carroñeros no dejan de sobrevolar tragedias
meanwhile                                   
scavengers don't stop overflying tragedies                                   

                                   con los despojos construyen fortunas
constructing fortunes with the spoils                                   


· · ·
501·INT034·120214 · Carroñeros ©2012  
711111120-12-Cádiz-Barbate-naufragio-w ©2011
· · ·

20.10.11

478b - Purple Princess



link
··· Spanish version ···


She was, sure enough, Princess Purple or rather Purple Princess. It was really by her father’s specific wish, Little Purple Princess wouldn’t change with time. She was Pur prin in the privacy, pronounced something like /ˈpɜːrprɪn/

Granite mountains where beeches and spruces grew in harmonious coexistence, caressing morning fogs and low clouds were left behind in the distance. Very far away were also left the stories told by blonde governesses, in languages full of consonants at the light of large fireplaces while thick logs were crackling becoming bright embers.

Memories of her father, with a pompous compound name and long surnames of complicated genealogy were closer. He had to resign his throne by the pressure and thread of republican hordes out of control.

She was living now, in a golden exile, in a small village in the French side of the Pyrenees, very close to Coll de Ares. She was always seen with a large glass of Pelforth Blonde beer, always accompanied by her black chauffeur, Ray Charles’ perfect double and her dark young gardener who reminded Marlon Brandon in his early years. Always. She was always in the same little square which led to the big church and a little farther going out from the fortified city, to the Fort that had protected the town from Spanish sieges.

She did not know anything about that, nor was she interested in events happened up to three centuries ago. She was much more interested in the crowd of flatterers and admirers surrounding her.

Her gaze fixed on the narrow main street, goes beyond the borders yearning for his native land. She liked to walk on stormy days along the Tech banks that reminded her of troubled waters from her childhood. She also liked to eat wild strawberries, currants and raspberries brought by her gardener when he climbed some nearby peak in his days off. The path edges were adorned with all these delicacies.

Nobody would ever breath a word about this, as it would always be a well kept secret, that she wasn’t a princess, nor was she exiled or there wasn’t any kingdom called Purpleland. Nobody would ever tell her that all her life had been a tale, a big tale, invented by her father; a renowned watchmaker who was an expert making all the pieces fit perfectly in tiny mechanisms. 

It was the story of her life, a story intended to make happy a six year old blond girl with the most bluish eyes by a supposed king. 



478b·INT033·111020 · Purple princess ©2011
 711110630-162-Francia-Prats de Mollo-Purple Princess-w ©2011


3.9.10

394B - As dez e dez



As dez e dez.

Sentado.

Sentado entre dous esteos. Dous esteos que sustentan
a humanidade encalecida.

Grises, coma esa humanidade na que me mergullo
enchoupando os meus inertes ósos.

Hoxe tamén o vin. E hai dous días. E hai dous días de hai dous días.
E así, moitos días.

Hoxe tampouco fixen nada. Tampouco. Non. Non fixen nada. Nada.

Segues aí. Estático. Ás dez e dez. Tódolos días son para ti as dez e dez. Canto levas aí, na túa pousada multiestrela?

E ese can? Quizais sexa soamente a presenza da fidelidade...
ou a denuncia doutras infidelidades.
O can das dez e dez. Tamén. Ancorado no tempo sen tempo.

Xamais un gruñido. Xamais un ladro.
Quizais sabe que eu non merezo nin iso.
Nin un ladro.

Hoxe tampouco fixen nada. Quizais, quizais mañá che bote unhas moedas
coas que pagar o meu desacougo. Non me preguntei polo prezo. Non o poderei pagar.

Nunca me censurou a túa ollada. Non me miras.
Que esteas aí xa é suficiente tormento.
Non sei se sabes iso. Non creo que che importe. Nin ao teu can.

Quizais mañá che diga algo.
Quizais.

Dime que queres que che diga. Non sei que dicirche!
Non hai nada que dicir cando as palabras están feitas de sons baleiros. Axúdame!

Quizais. Quizais tamén eu estea detido nas dez e dez.
Apreixado.

Apreixado e sen un can que me acompañe.
E sen ninguén que me diga palabras baleiras.

Sen ninguén.




enlaces a dos mundos con vida propia
que un día, por casualidad, encontré... y me quedé

Concha López Fernández, a nena,
leyó algunos de mis escritos
y decidió traducir el que antecede a estas líneas

para decirle gracias sólo se necesita una palabra
... o ninguna
que el aire lo transporta todo



◄ 394b►
As dez e dez • INT032/100903 ©
070928-P1030837-El hombre de las diez y diez ©
Lumix DMC-TZ5 - f/4.2 - 1/80 seg - 48 mm* - ISO 100

en castellano lo encontrarás aquí: Cristal Rasgado: Las diez y diez

13.7.09

293 - The blue taxi girl





She is patiently waiting for the arrival of a taxi. I am talking to her. She is telling it to me. Apparently, all the girls waiting for a taxi tell stories.

Occasionally, she averts her eyes, without losing attention, to have some snack to get her strength back. She has been waiting for many days. She tells me exactly, without looking up in any diary, the hours she has spent there sitting on that small square from which all the visitors that New York devours, take photographs to the flatiron Building. She tells me it is “La Plancha”, that’s the way other people call it.

I say nothing. I don’t want to discourage her since I have the certainty, sorry, I would say almost the certainty that her wait will be eternal. I mean, her wait for a blue taxi.

I don’t need to make her many questions. She is talking in a soft voice about the taxi. It has to be a blue one, she is not wearing yellow clothes for that special occasion in vain.

I hint to her that New York is full of white limousines. She moves her hands disdainfully but delicately in an eloquent gesture. I also talk to her about black limousines, fewer than white ones; but there are still quite a few. However, she keeps insisting. Blue is the colour which suits her best. It suits her, as if she were her clothing.

I go closer to a street stall and bring her a passion fruit juice. It’s hot. 76ºF and humidity is high. She asks me if there weren’t orange or peach juices. Better an orange one.

While I am coming back with the juice, now an orange one, hundreds of taxis pass by in every direction. I know I won’t see any blue one… but I stare at them as if my happiness would depend on it.




Hurries

Fast taxis dye the Fifth Avenue with minimal yellow shooting stars.
Fast pedestrians leave the tracks of their existence in the air.
Trees tied to the noise mistake their shades for a false sky.
And a false sea climbs the skyscrapers.




Speed

And hurriedly, a warm tree wants to come to a square,
where a girl dressed in yellow, was waiting for a taxi,
to tell her the secret everybody conceals from her.
Blue doesn’t exist. It doesn’t exist in movement.

.
.
.


:::Post 293 INT 031 - 090526 - The blue taxi girl
:::photo 1: 090513-C1556 - La chica del taxi azul - f/3.5 - 1/400 seg - 420*mm
:::photo 2: 090515-C1628 - Prisas - f/2.7 - 1/4 seg - 36*mm
:::photo 3: 090509 -P1020565 - Arbol veloz - f/3.3 - 1/60 seg - 30*mm
:::
link: Spanish version: Cristal Rasgado - La chica del taxi azul

10.7.09

292 - Maps

ñoco!
.
.
.
daddy!. look!. a map!
.
yeah. the map of our world
.
let's show it to mum
.
it's not necessary. she lives within
.
.
.

:::Pos 292 - INT 030/090710 – Maps
:::photo: 060723 - Líquenes en el Pico Salvaguard - Bagneres de Luchon / Benasque - Pirineos franceses
:::Sony Cibershot P1 - f/5.6 - 1/540 seg - 30 mm*
:::Link: Spanish version - LMA 094 - Mapas