Thursday, May 27, 2010

De um outro patio

Marianna tinha perdido as chaves de casa.Olhava do alto dos viadutos carros e pessoas la embaixo. Ouvia suas respiracoes, suas saudades. Sem asas, pensava algumas vezes se doeria cair, largando-se dali concreto abaixo, pela janela sem vidro.

Em tardes de sol e nuvens era mais facil persistir. Resistir. E revoar com os olhos, acompanhando pássaros impossíveis, pardais açodados, potes de plantas vazios nas janelas dos vizinho.

Lembrou de impossíveis amoreiras, do cajueiro em frente à casa, de amêndoas nas calçadas. De um céu azul sem nuvens. Daquele calor.

Saturday, May 1, 2010

Windmill farm

it was summertime when they crossed that border. half-empty packs on their backs, they came across the windmill farm. not a graveyard. Instead, a promise of lighter mornings behind those hills. Brighter, these dreamed promises appeared, although embroidered in much longing for a land they would not see again in their lifetime.

Saturday, April 10, 2010

last highway

at the end of the road, the sky was still pretty blue.

Laying there, I had a feeling of a continued fall, the world slowly turning around, while Nepomuceno walking away unabashed, never turning back to look at the spot where we had splashed, not once slowing the pace to smell that scent of freshly wet grass in a summer morning, unabated by the threads and "laces" of all those low growing bushes wrapping around his feet while he walked back to the road, to the worn out pavement still reflecting last night's rain, while my eyes letting me know they were about to close again, one last time.

I could see we'd reached the end of things, the last illuminated point at night, after which all that blue started  slowly to melt away, impossibly pixelating on faded grays, the pavement dying at a distance, exposing stones and dried mud where no electricity would ever reach. A silence of bits and of a smile-only cat figure sitting on a pole, the scent of palm wax on recently cleaned wooden floors, so many years ago that it had become just a fleeting glimpse, a faded gray:  a life I had no idea, anymore, full of cartoons watched on technicolor, the Saturday mornings' truck selling eggs and vegetables. The windmill of a lifetime slowly swirling around that blue sky, further exposing those interrupted cables. What a jump - I barely heard me say, what a splash this had been. And as it were I could not move, and it had finally come to me.

And why on earth my last thoughts were going to this middle-aged woman dancing at a disco in the Philippines, in the eighties of my budding years? Slowly dancing at a feminine voice, "here lies love, here lies love.."

Friday, April 2, 2010


Leonora had seen winters there, all right. impatiently waiting, she had seen snow falling for longer than she could remember. All those months during which the lake turned into ice and ancestral paths were reestablished between the island and the house. Ice skating, illegal fur traders, bricks heating bed covers, and the view from the balcony, which had now grown interrupted.

Long evenings, she thought, get me down. I wish I could sit outside and Rashid, ah, Rashid, would arrive at once. Bringing news of my sister. A photograph, perhaps just enough to show her face once more, swimming miles at that time of year on warmer lands. Here, a decaying doll silently longing for her return.

But what, now that the weather is warm and Rashid is gone? Through my opened window, I think of freshly squeezed lemons and of a Martinique I am not about to see again. And of Marion.

Lenora's mind is failing. Her age weights on her body, frail fingers pressing long gone ivory keys in the afternoons. Most of the time she forgets things. Except for intervals of clarity each time growing shorter, balcony, island, lake, floral arrangements, the world, are all involved on a ever thickening haze. A slumber  she has learned to compare to sleepwalking, and which grows heavier with time.

Dressed in lace and silk, She wears cameos and keeps her hair tightly held on the back.

Sometimes she thinks about the children she did not have, on how they would have looked lovely running on the balcony, or through the grassed patch leading to the lake. Perhaps - no, certainly - they would have been as beautiful and charming as those Marion had had. Or did not she? Perhaps Marion did not have children either after all, although, like herself, she had married many years ago, soon after they left the boarding school. And then, also as Lenora, outlived her husband.

Perhaps she also kept the pictures they took during the school years. All those pictures which, although faded, still filled the room with perfume and slowed down her heart a little. As if despite all these years it could still wiggle and weight, gently expanding and irradiating warmth through her body.

"Yes," Lenora thinks sometimes, during rarefied moments of clarity, "we could have had beautiful children."    

Friday, March 26, 2010


era junho: capuzes, neblina, silencios, inverno. Apenas mulas de sal parando antes de marchas de muitas léguas de volta ao mar. Levando impossíveis pedras ate o porto do reyno.

Se eu tivesse olhos, repisava todas aquelas pedras.

Sunday, March 21, 2010

do rés do chão

Ainda cheguei a ver antes da queda, no segundo imediato. E depois, enquanto acordava lento. Meio-dia de sol e o cheiro de terra mijada, curral de gado, açoiteras penduradas nos alpendres. Aqui o gosto de barro seco na boca, o mundo transformado em ervas ressecadas: pleno agosto. A bicicleta retorcida, o corpo dolorido. De longe, o verde daqueles campos turvava. Entre silêncios de chocalhos, meu avô nem me ouviu morrer.

marbles, fables, and other paths

He worked for years behind those walls. Silently, landed pins on shoe soles, tied leather knots, crunched peanuts during burning seasons. I had never walked by those factory walls before. All those water lilies impossibly blooming in august, under no sun to be seen. Silently.
Giaccomo had a wife and three daughters. Arrived there before the war, silently, weary, but holding some hope. Manzinni, se chiamava il padre suo. Era morto da anni. Had not ever dreamed he would meet Marta, and so soon, after all.

Saturday, March 20, 2010

four o'clock, before the rain

each day waitin' for the rain. The silence of lilies and daffodils entertaining insects. We were all at the tipping point of the cape: further west there was only water.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Il castello in viaggio

A tiny second before the explosion. I heard a fluff of air through the shoulders. I was humming a song. "Le cose belle," lei me aveva parlato una volta, "sono lente." Then it was really coming. Like a nineteen sixty two repeated in fast motion; the bulge of air distorted; the last sandhill crane. and I wondered if it would have felt like this when the dinossaurs said goodbye.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Rained in

Early March
[Eu me forçava a olhar aqueles rolos de feno molhados estragados depois de tanta chuva ressecando esquecidos sob um céu azul e calmo. O cheiro do capim se espalhando lento flutuando todo nevoeiro de abril sobre as coisas, sobre a cerca onde eu me apoiava agora, sobre o barro enlameado me cobrindo os sapatos, sobre a bicicleta cedendo lentamente ao abraço molhado do chão vermelho repicado de amarelo queimado em tanto capim.

Ele sentava do outro lado daqueles rolos, eu sabia, dia após dia, tardes inteiras contando nuvens e imaginando Iolanda ali no descampado. Imaginando outras notas que iria tocar e os dedos, os labios, os fios de Iolanda sem "y" despachada deitada dormindo leve naquele verão que perdeu de vista mas que insistia em trazer consigo, preso na argola de latao balançando na corrente que colheira insuspeito quando ainda eram jovens, Iolanda dormindo mas na verdade apenas fingindo não estar ali, ensaiando uma saida definitiva que enfim iria acontecer, deixando ele, o céu, o latão, aqueles rolos renovados a cada ano, a bicicleta enlameada, e meus sapatos. Olhando da cerca. Tanto céu. Azul.]

Saturday, March 6, 2010



[guarda! guarda, Filipa!  Dietro quegli alberi rimangono i racconti della nonna.  Coperti di cenere, riposati su bracieri e coperti con quel sottile strato di zucchero che hai amato di trovare su le biscotti che lei facceva di solito.
riesci a vederli? li vedi?]

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Sirenia Claire

Sirenia Claire.
A music project.

"...unabashedly “pop” album that sounds like it was recorded halfway between outer space and the hip indie store downtown."   

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Depois de tanta solidão

não volte. (...)
[Kamil had this motorcycle he insisted in driving around with. Centuries old, it seemed sometimes.  Pilot cap on his head, he mostly rode on this impossibly running Sokol with a tripod and a camera on a saddlebag which seemed to be about to come apart. Long roads. Sunshine catcher, moon chaser, he used to say he was.
Before digital cameras and cellular telephones. I wondered how he managed to keep that bike running. But he did. ]

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Puerto Madero

"¿Y fue por este río de sueñera y de barro
que las proas vinieron a fundarme la patria?
Irían a los tumbos los barquitos pintados
entre los camalotes de la corriente zaina.

Pensando bien la cosa, supondremos que el río
era azulejo entonces como oriundo del cielo
con su estrellita roja para marcar el sitio
en que ayunó Juan Díaz y los indios comieron.

Lo cierto es que mil hombres y otros mil arribaron
por un mar que tenía cinco lunas de anchura
y aún estaba poblado de sirenas y endriagos
y de piedras imanes que enloquecen la brújula.

Prendieron unos ranchos trémulos en la costa,
durmieron extrañados. Dicen que en el Riachuelo,
pero son embelecos fraguados en la Boca.
Fue una manzana entera y en mi barrio: en Palermo.

Una manzana entera pero en mitá del campo
expuesta a las auroras y lluvias y suestadas.
La manzana pareja que persiste en mi barrio:
Guatemala, Serrano, Paraguay y Gurruchaga.

Un almacén rosado como revés de naipe
brilló y en la trastienda conversaron un truco;
el almacén rosado floreció en un compadre,
ya patrón de la esquina, ya resentido y duro.

El primer organito salvaba el horizonte
con su achacoso porte, su habanera y su gringo.
El corralón seguro ya opinaba YRIGOYEN,
algún piano mandaba tangos de Saborido.

Una cigarrería sahumó como una rosa
el desierto. La tarde se había ahondado en ayeres,
los hombres compartieron un pasado ilusorio.
Sólo faltó una cosa: la vereda de enfrente.

A mí se me hace cuento que empezó Buenos Aires:
La juzgo tan eterna como el agua y como el aire."

Monday, February 15, 2010

Lunch break

Peter used to look at the illuminated altar three times a week. Between one and two, on sunny afternoons, the light was best. Silently he thought about crocodiles, elephants, a backyard in Luanda he had not seen for ages, but which refused to leave, day or night.