andar por ahí | martin patricio barrios ago. 2012 - Page 97

I ran the torch batteries down to see the cigarette smoke. I chose well. In the morning I looked at FW over the little cup of macchiato and told him: para mi que Carriego no fumaba, ¿cómo vas a fumar si no ves el humo?4 He laughed because I said that in Spanish. (p. 10) Sometimes I agree, I mean: I agree when I read a book by Heirich Böll and I get the impression that I have been in the character’s place and, in spite of that, believe that I must go on reading, or when I look at a Velázquez’s painting and I say to myself: such-and-such thing should be changed, as if it were possible to change it, or when I listen to the music from the Wop Os and it crushes my exile, it crushes my pain and happiness of having an identity written with bullets on a skin that would be mine. Or not. At some point I might have been 17, that’s what is registered on the chronicles of those who say they have known me since then, but I don’t know, I don’t remember. I don’t know whether it was me or I was there. At the age of 17 I might have died or they might have made me disappear, or I might have died of fright, and just of fright, or of love, or of revulsion, or of anger, or I might have lived for others, or I might have survived through others and I died in the talk of others who were not me and I cursed and I stopped growing if it was me who was 17, I stopped growing like the Peter Pan, or the very myself who went out and did not come back because it really isn’t worth going back anywhere, if such a thing is possible. There are people who see life as a series of events that already happened and almost certainly must miss them because they already happened and they might believe in evolution. It happened to me that I’m still in love with my girlfriend in 7th grade and with the chubby baker from that town close to Cuatro caminos and with an orange seller whose name was Awa, near the Sahel I fell in love with Awa and at this corner I also fell in love, with all of them and as I fell in love with all of them I die of pain for all of them, all together, all the time and nevertheless I know that somebody must be somewhere in China or Georgia or Burzaco and there I go in search all the time. How many lives do we have, Poyo? How many seconds have been since we stuck our violet heads and let our lungs burn? Could it have been like that? Or it is that we still don’t understand very well, from the beginning, what it will be like to be a grownup, what it will be like to have grown up, or if god was all my friends who got drunk with me at those places which, it can be said, were not built to be visited by the gods. (p. 12) Minaret megaphones calling to prayer, metallic calls to prayer, men who respect god, men who fear god, believers with their heads covered and feet washed with waters that are not always clean, feet washed with turbid waters, cracked feet, callous feet, washed with muddy waters that clean dirty feet of clean souls of men who heap up sandals, thongs, fraying shoes, shoes with soles hardened by dirty rains and poorly dried, shoes without laces; as all the metallic calls of a minaret megaphone that echo between the chest and the soul, like Bukowski´s5 basses by the window in that house of mine in summer nights, scaring thief monkeys on the roofs of Varanassi which run howling among strings of kites that are too small for such a big sky, frightening birds away through the mazes suffocated by the clove and heat of Stone Town, moving the eyes of the blind man in the great mosque of Djenné, megaphones of worn-out cones calling to prayer and making the doves of Hassan II and Hagia Sophia fly away, annoying early morning megaphones that call to prayer while I look at the dirty streets, weathered stones, burnt with urine and I breathe the acid air form the bonfires and my eyes are itching and I try not to mix life with death, weakness with necessity, empires with fears, I try to separate this from that and I put my hands in my pockets so as not to let my hands get cold, so those hands that are mine do not touch that which is not