Month: Feb 2013

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, …