Year: 2013

laying down the law

Upon my return, Marmalade ignored me for a whole day. It was bad enough, but not as bad as Mackerel: he took over two days to allow me to get near him. Between the two boys, I was feeling well and truly punished for my affront of having left them for so many weeks. Flower seemed the only one happy enough to see me back, and to allow me to hold her and fuss her as soon I set foot inside the house. Strange, and not the least because out of the three Flo is the decidedly and staunchly standoffish one. -“Have you forgiven me yet, Marmelade…?” I seem to have been. It’s very early morning on my second day back home, and I have just been pulled out of my sleep by a bomber engine crouched on my chest. He pats my cheek with his humongous paw, as if to reassert his claim on my time and attention. I smile at him: the damage that paw would make, if he’d set his mind to …

lembrança

Umas escadas de grisalha pedra, teatro eleito da criançada e palco de muita risada e infindas brincadeiras: degraus largos alinhados e em cada um sua escolta de livré de terracota envolta em musgo cansado e velho – neles florescem desgrenhadas a cada rol de primavera sardinheiras inebriadas de cor e sol. Um alpendre onde uma glicínia airosa e ancestral se enlaça amorosa pelos corrimões e balustrada. Ao lado passa a estrada, mas na estrada não passa nada nem ninguém – a não ser um calor cego de quase verão e um ou outro zangão vestido do mesmo veludo negro que as velhas, ou as noites sem lua cheia; e por vezes passa uma brisa meia que se alisa pelo vale, envergonhada e decídua e incapaz. Três velhos. Uma rapariguita de tez trigueira e escura trança que ri e salta e dança e canta e declama e rodopia, embrulhada em antigas colchas de poída e traçada fazenda, e em velhos cortinados de renda – e que assim lhes enche o coração e lhes troca a paz …

eco

De onde vêm as palavras e para onde vão? Por que esquinas se roçam, por que caminhos se perdem? Por onde se quedam e por onde se rendem, por onde se prendem e por onde se acham escravas incólumes vergastas impunes, trevas pirilampos cardumes núvens céu? Porque são elas portas tais, assim, portais e chão e pão e enlace e navalha? Porque calha as palavras serem mão e serem pedra, eco perfume sortilégio e gume, mágoa suspiro risada e perderem-se em água e onda e nada? E porque sempre regressam como se fruto maduro ao ventre verde ou como vento suão e voraz quando já nada se pode, mesmo quando não se querem mais? Morrerão alguma vez as palavras como morrem os sonhos e se fecham os lábios e as mãos, e se apagam finalmente os dias os olhos os ecos as vozes?   © Nina Light CC-BY-NC-ND image credit: “L’Umanitá contro el male”, Gaetano Cellini (1908), photo by Massimo Cuomo found @ eccelenze-italiane.tmblr.com      

the magpies

  I know that when I was born the gods that purvey for such things had run out of all sorts and manners of clay, and so they had no choice but to shape me out of a magpie. At least that is what Auntie used to tell me – that, and that I had somehow turned out just like Nan. – Why, was Nana made of magpie too? – She too was fashioned out of a magpie, girl… Why, she is the original magpie! Next to her, all other magpies are but pale and hopeless reflections. – Even me? – Even you, girl. You’ve got a lot of bread to go through before you can fill her shoes, that’s for sure, but you’re sure giving it one hell of a good try! You show real promise. Like Nan, like child. Magpies, one and the other. – And you, Tattie, weren’t you made of magpie too? – Me, I’m the palest of them all. My magpie hasn’t got the time, and she’s seen so much …

The Incredible and Sad Tale of Innocent Eréndira and her Heartless Grandmother ~ Gabriel García Márquez

ERÉNDIRA WAS BATHING her grandmother when the wind of her misfortune began to blow. The enormous mansion of moon like concrete lost in the solitude of the desert trembled down to its foundations with the first attack. But Eréndira and her grandmother were used to the risks of the wild nature there, and in the bathroom decorated with a series of peacocks and childish mosaics of Roman baths they scarcely paid any attention to the calibre of the wind. The grandmother, naked and huge in the marble tub, looked like a handsome white whale. The granddaughter had just turned fourteen and was languid, soft-boned, and too meek for her age. With a parsimony that had something like sacred rigor about it, she was bathing her grandmother with water in which purifying herbs and aromatic leaves had been boiled, the latter clinging to the succulent back, the flowing metal-coloured hair, and the powerful shoulders which were so mercilessly tattooed as to put sailors to shame. “Last night I dreamt I was expecting a letter,” the grandmother …

light, ghostly (2): under an electric moonlight

It’s only the middle of the afternoon, but the sky is laden heavy with storm and snow. It’s gone so dark I can no longer read, and I slowly leave the blanketed comfort of my corner by the window in search of this other, less subtle, harsher, more strident light. I don’t much care for this other light. In truth, I could almost say I resent it. This light, it changes things. It stands as a threshold past which day becomes night and what we thought was material and immutable and permanent suddenly becomes something else, but mostly shadows of itself. It gives different hues to colours, even different sizes to things. It makes the pages of my old, old, old Penguin copy of The Painted Veil seem even browner, even brittler, even older. Almost too fragile to bear. And it does the same to my hands, to the worn out brocade of the chair cover, even to the terracotta coloured walls, the white of the ceiling. It solidifies shadows into corners of rooms and under furniture, …