Quienes lo han visto dicen que el palacio es una visión de ensueño, un pedazo de oro que flota sobre las montañas y entre las nubes. Diez mil peones lo construyeron cuentan en la capital. Subieron por las montañas en una fila larga, muy larga, de gente, camiones de material y bajó solo el polvo y la sospecha que lo único que había quedado de aquella serpiente humana eran los pisos rojos de SU residencia.
Dicen que nació como todos nosotros, desnudo y enrollado en el limo sangriento de la placenta de su madre, una campesina. Ese día el cielo parió una estrella. La escupió de entre sus entrañas y ha estado ahí, para recordarnos el día que él llegó al mundo. No soportó los azotes y el alcoholismo de su padre y corrió a refugiarse en la casa de su hermana en la capital apenas cumplidos los once años. Corrió, corrió por el campo y entre las zarzas y cruzó los Cárpatos a paso ligero, con zancadas largas por entre las rocas y sobre los riscos. Vio los valles y las montañas y los ríos y lagos y pueblos chicos y grandes de nuestro país. Y su corazón rebosaba de amor por la tierra que pisaba, por el cielo que le cobijaba, por la tierra y la carne y la sangre de la patria de la que padre sería. Y así, como una estrella que cae, descendió desde las montañas hasta el mundo de la capital, de los autos, de las máquinas, de las luchas obreras, de las injusticias eternas.
Yo nunca he oído su voz. Lo he visto en la televisión. Un metro sesenta y ocho, con abrigo de terciopelo y sombrero de piel. Solo una vez mamá lo ha escuchado. Dice que lo oyó hablar, murmurar, gritar, vociferar desde lo alto del balcón del palacio de gobierno. La plaza llena, abarrotada de gente, ondeando banderines rojos por el cuadrado entero, desbordándose por calles y calles de tela roja, banderines rojos, gorros rojos, y ojos rojos de poco dormir. Esperando desde la noche anterior los comités obreros revolucionarios los organizaron, a punta de lengüetazos de voz y sorbos de vino caliente, los sastres de este lado, los zapateros del otro, los maestros más allá. Él habló en medio del silencio de rojo habló de los días que permaneció preso. Habló de los días de su juventud, cuando la revolución llegó a las calles de la capital. Habló de los horrores que vivió en prisión, cuando el gobierno blanco le metió tras las rejas por comunista y revolucionario. Y habló de los años que vivió encerrado en una prisión del estado, en una celda diminuta de dos metros por dos.
A la mañana siguiente develaron una portentosa estatua encuestre. Y una más grande al año siguiente y otra más tarde. A veces jugamos a corretearnos por entre las patas enormes del caballo, pero otras solo vamos ahi, y alguien trae cigarros y fumamos uno o nos quedamos tirados bajo el fresco da esa panza monumental hasta que los guardias nos persiguen y salimos todos corriendo, con cigarrillos o sin ellos hasta que el parque se vuelve calle y los guardias regresan a ser guardias y nosotros a jugar pelota en algún callejón del barrio.
Yo no le tengo miedo pero mamá si. Tiene una imágen suya sobre la repisa de la chimenea y la veo rezar en voz tímida frente al altar improvisado. A veces llora, otras no. Y por qué le tiene miedo. Nunca responde, nunca me dice. Dice que las paredes oyen, los pisos oyen, los platos oyen. Todos oyen y luego se calla y no dice más. Pobre mamá. Papá dice que actúa raro desde que tío Dragos murió. Yo no lo ví mucho, pero dice mamá que andaba en malos pasos. Dice que decía muchas cosas, y que uno no debe decir tantas cosas si no hay nada que decir.
Algunos dicen que Él no existe. Dicen que es una invención del gobierno. Pero no es posible, porque todos los días lo veo en la escuela, viendonos a todos dede un cuadro sobre el pizarrón. Tío Dragos decía eso, pero ya no dice nada porque no tiene nada más que decir. Como dice mamá, no hay que decir tantas cosas si no se tiene nada que decir.

A heart of storm

The sound of a rapid buzz of bug wings left his ear and dissipated in the distance. Its chaotic flight moved in a drunken wave from petal to petal until its body disappeared among the many other bees that feasted on the nectar of the garden roses.
She kissed his forehead with a quick movement of her lips. Up there, the arms of the tree barely moved and its leaves reacted with lazy yawns to the morning breeze. It was a fine day of summer. The sky was clear and the burning eye of the sun poured its cold heat over them.
“Karol” he whispered to her ear, and she looked back at him with watery eyes and an open mouth. The kiss was soft, like an engulfing embrace of warm water after a winter day. What did he feel inside his chest? There was a song, a distant song that grew progressively louder and louder and with it the shout of a pulsating, throbbing rage that permeated through his body, slowly taking over the undulating movements of his tongue, fogging his brain and escaping with the hunger of his kiss.
The minarets’ reflection wavered on the still water of the lake and the light breeze of a chilly London day carried on its wings the clicking sounds of their play. There was something irremediably elusive of a kiss, and an embrace, and the feeling of that thirst burning with such rage, so far, so many miles away.
“Away”. He murmured. “Away” he sighed. Why can’t we fly away, to an undying sea of nothingness and calm. Why can’t we fly and forget, and live, and not live, and be and not be, and sing and be quiet, feeling our feet burn in the sand, and float in the salt, cold and warm, warm and sweet.
There was a burst that night, and little Karol woke up, feeling the pulsating sting of a lightning jolt crawling through her spine. As the bombs fell and the sky raged, and the stink of fear and smoke filled the city’s streets, the night dissolved and the murmur of her tears, fatigued, and broken sank her into a fragile sleep. It was a train, or a bus, or a car, or the trunk of a van, which pierced through the back of the forest on her way north.
Her eyes were closed, and her lips shut. Sleepy, sleepy twigs of hair fell on her forehead in the depth of a peaceful sleep. He bent to murmur sweet syllables of air and stroke the threads of her dyed hair.
“You fell asleep.”
That morning the hums of the monitor filled the room. There was a shot, and another, and then silence reigned as a pair of men covered in black masks walked up the stairs. Marco stood there, watching up in awe to the frame of light until the sight of a flag, and a multitude of black took over the roof and the view from the helicopter drifted away, and away, to the mountains, and the news studio, and the concerned face of a reporter that burst in a diatribe of unintelligible words and explanations. The camera blinked and there was a shout again, and a shot, and the TV showed the dismembered bodies of men, young men drying under the sun, with their old fusils laying bare in their tombs of bone and flesh. He blinked again and he was there, in front of the water and under the minarets.
“I didn’t know how to speak in German until I was ten” and she laughed. “I went to school and didn’t know anything. I don’t know what they thought. They probably thought many things” and she laughed again as he threw the folded arch of a leaf of grass into the water. It sprang back into its original shape and turned and turned like a broken clock.
“I liked the cuckoo clock we had in my house. The little bird would go out and chirp every hour and every quarter hour. When the hour hit, it would chirp a few times, depending on the time. It would only go out once every quarter hour. You had to turn it off at night unless you wanted to listen it singing and singing when everything went still. It is so silent up there you can hear the earth breath. It is a storm of quietness, so thick that it is made of glass.”

Film critics

My neighbour calls his dog “sea salt”. Bullshit. Utter Bullshit. As if calling a dog with a “poetic” name was a thing. He is one of the growing herd of ever more common gigantic posers. All of them big fat egos with an empty and ignorant little self. They nauseate me. They are sad and disgusting. And the worst of all is they are all going to watch our film. Rob, Marla, … God help us all.
We filmed it using a home camera. The result was utterly disgusting. Rob’s face was there smiling, his legs spread over the floor in front of his chair. There was something luminous and ethereal about the room that this piece of crappy shitty camera couldn’t get. And I told Rob. I told him That was the best asset of our shit movie. And he just laughed and said, quiet Marco. And I kept quiet of course while inside something was boiling and shouting Fuck it and fuck you. Things Rob didn’t hear of course.
Our film looks like a family video. It is a family video. My god! What a shame. What an utter and complete shame! And yes, I can see all those pompous bastards loving it, praising it for being so raw and intimate and many other idiotic reasons they will repeat ad nauseam while eating salmon and drinking champagne and glorifying our poverty. Our Fucking poverty! And I am tired. Tired as fuck!
Alright, alright. I told Rob it won’t work. It just won’t work. Not with me. This is shit. Caca. Mierda. And it infuriates me. It just makes me fume how it is they will be holding a vegetarian caviar cracker or some other crazy engender of a dish on one hand while grabbing our balls and our future with the other.
For fuck’s sake!

A poet on the train

I exist. The lights go by and we sit there looking at the dark windows move as the landscape changes in front of us. Yes. The train moves and with it we move forward. Where? Where are we going. Where? I shout without shouting, just writing on a piece of blank paper.
Fuck! She whispers a thing or two and I don’t understand. I nod. Yes. She accommodates in her seat and looks away. Someone reads a magazine, or another of those crappy newspapers that they give away for free. The images start pouring into my mind, as the black outside moves in front of the window. They wait in line to enter the club in front of an NYC venue. She has a delicious pussy. Shaved (almost) with a few hairs and her lips taste like something I can’t define. Her lips taste like her lips I guess. Sounds lame but it is true. Yes. Yes. I write and cross out the few things I say. I write and keep quiet. Quiet, very quiet and listening and from the window to my right that quiet picture comes looking at me from a soup and a calm of darkness. And he, a man I’ve never seen, looks at me from far away. Very far. Very far away as if trying to recall a story, trying to recognize me.
Someone else looks at us from the back and the infinite chain of glances multiplies ad infinitum on the dark and moving glass.
Yes. Quiet. Yes. Quiet. Something pulses inside me. Something undefinable and obscure. I write in feverish calligraphy the word.
Passion. And I stop. I look at it, and it looks back at me with its monstrous eyes and shouts at me tainted with a disgusting laughter.
Fuck you Passion. I cross it out until its shouts vanish. Fuck you Passion. Fuck you.
The scratch of the pen on the paper makes such a loud noise it hurts my ears, it hurts my hand, and my hand muscles and I turn and she is looking with a lost glance in front of her. I can’t take it. I can’t stand it anymore. The scratching. It hurts my ears. It does. I keep writing, and the noise keeps growing, growing growing, and she looks in front of her, and I try to see where is she looking at, and there is a homeless man that carries a big black plastic bag, and a map of colourful metro lines pasted behind him and the nape of an old fat woman sleeping in front of us.
So I feel it. Puuum! The break comes and my inside loosens. The noise collapses and the page stands in front of me, white, plain, and silent.

Public Reading

They like it that way. The members of the crowd listen attentively to the voice that speaks in a modulated tone in front of them. The voice says one thing, then the next, and one head bows in a slight gesture, another one flashes a smile and one more looks up to the ceiling and traces a circle through the room until her eyes look down to the floor. The voice talks and talks. And then another one takes over and keeps talking and talking. Their stories form a confused soup inside my head. They have the same feel, the same flavor, they give us the same intricate glimpse into the lives of the decadent breed that inhabits the narrative edges of the urban landscape.
There isn’t silence in that world. Silence is dead and in its place there is a continuum of action that keeps moving somewhere, somewhere, and is trying to construct an image of our humanity by focusing on the urban and the decadent.
It suffers from the fundamental weakness of being predictable in its unpredictability. It tries to address big questions and big themes by merely throwing nihilism at them, making use of the archetypal character of this world, one that in some unconscious level is extremely self aware of her mortality but isn’t scared about it.
The works then reduce to the mere action of constructing a big negation. As the crowd listens, the voices read stories that necessarily fall on the the expected unexpected themes of their tradition: the never ending questioning of sexual taboos and a duel with mortality led by a heroic character that just doesn’t give a fuck. And so I wonder why do they all sound the same. Why do they keep imitating each other? The right theme is there. “There isn’t much more to the human experience than death” Unfortunately the vehicle isn’t new. Fifty years ago similar words written on a single roll of paper in a methamphetamine ecstasy would’ve broken something, would’ve brought to life the big question mark that they are trying to raise, but their encasing is becoming old, and the feverish excitement of that trip is slowly fading away. Their question marks have become a timid self referential affirmation. Their voices are one. They write what is expected from them. They say what they are supposed to say.