April 20, 2007

Joshua Bell live or your daily iPod?

What is this life if, full of care,
We have no time to stand and stare.
W.H. Davies ("Leisure")

What if it happens that Joshua Bell is playing Bach, Schubert or Manuel M. Ponce out of the metro on his Stradivarius, but you're on your way to work? Would you stop and listen, or would you prefer to keep listening your daily, say, U2-iPod?

He did play. Story. Audio.

April 19, 2007

Villa de Guadalupe, Sony Center

Esta noche cuando llegaba a mi Arsenal Kino para ver a Ingrid Bergman y Humphrey Bogart pasé, por enésima vez, junto a una maqueta de Potsdamer Platz. Y tuve el déjà-vu de un déjà-vu, porque ésta era la segunda ocasión en que reconocía en el techo de la plaza del Sony Center, obra de Helmut Jahn, la Villa de Guadalupe de Pedro Ramírez Vázquez.


April 17, 2007

His prayer stand

by Abba Kovner

Is there a prayer for one who prays like him
seething. He has offered no sacrifice, built
no altar. He has not grasped the coattail
of a flying angel,
nor placed his trust in the mercy of heaven;

is there a prayer for one who prays like him
seething. Once he loved the lonely
dweller in the sky. He remembers
the day he lost his patience waiting
for the echo of his cry for help
to come back from empty space.

His prayer stand now
is the nickel clothes hanger
above his bag of bones wrapped
in a chilly sheet as he prays
before bottles hovering
like acrobats on trampolines—
is everything liquid? Is there nothing
after the infusion?
Translated from the Hebrew by Eddie Levenston

April 16, 2007

Psalm and Lament

by Donald Justice
by the author himself)

in memory of my mother (1897–1974)

The clocks are sorry, the clocks are very sad.
One stops, one goes on striking the wrong hours.

And the grass burns terribly in the sun,
The grass turns yellow secretly at the roots.

Now suddenly the yard chairs look empty, the sky looks empty,
The sky looks vast and empty.

Out on Red Road the traffic continues; everything continues.
Nor does memory sleep; it goes on.

Out spring the butterflies of recollection,
And I think that for the first time I understand

The beautiful ordinary light of this patio
And even perhaps the dark rich earth of a heart.

(The bedclothes, they say, had been pulled down.
I will not describe it. I do not want to describe it.

No, but the sheets were drenched and twisted.
They were the very handkerchiefs of grief.)

Let summer come now with its schoolboy trumpets and
But the years are gone, the years are finally over.

And there is only
This long desolation of flower-bordered sidewalks

That runs to the corner, turns, and goes on,
That disappears and goes on

Into the black oblivion of a neighborhood and a world
Without billboards or yesterdays.

Sometimes a sad moon comes and waters the roof tiles.
But the years are gone. There are no more years.

April 12, 2007

Maradona: en horizontal, en vertical

Izq. Maradona en Japón contra Perú (1979)
Der. Maradona en España contra Bélgica (1982)

April 7, 2007


"Y mi conclusión es que uno debe vivir en el lugar donde se encuentre uno más a gusto. La vida es corta y estamos mucho tiempo enterrados".

Juan Rulfo a Clara Aparicio

Rulfo en Tlamanalco

April 5, 2007

Pedro Coronel

"En la historia del arte mexicano moderno la figura de Pedro Coronel tiene un lugar destacado: con él y con otros pintores de su generación, como Soriano y Gerzso, se consuma la ruptura con el muralismo mexicano. Los antecedentes fueron, como es sabido, la rebelión de dos grandes pintores, Rufino Tamayo y Carlos Mérida, así como el ejemplo de una figura aislada, Frida Kahlo. Pero fue la generación de Coronel la que, por su acción, dejó el camino libre a los nuevos pintores: Cuevas, Felguérez, Gironella, Rojo, Lilia Carrillo, García Ponce y otros".

Ilustración: Pedro Coronel, Cantar de cantares.
Texto: Octavio Paz, "Pedro Coronel", Vuelta 104, julio 1985.

April 2, 2007

Simeon Stylites, Walrus

"Teach us to care and not to care. Teach us to sit still."
George Lamb


"In these times [c. 440 A.D.], there flourished and became illustrious, Simeon, of holy and famous memory, who originated the contrivance of stationing himself on the top of a column, thereby occupying a space of scarce two cubits in circumference. This man, endeavoring to realize in the flesh the existence of the heavenly hosts, lifts himself above the concerns of the earth, and overpowering the downward tendency of man's nature, is intent on things above. He was adored by all the countryside, wrought many miracles, and the Emperor Theodosius II listened to his advice and sought his benediction.
"Simeon prolonged his endurance of this mode of life through fifty-six years, nine of which he spent in the first monastery where he was instructed in divine knowledge, and forty-seven in the "Mandra" as it was called; namely ten in a certain nook; on shorter columns, seven; and thirty upon one of forty cubits."
Evagrius Ponticus (Ecclesiastical History, I.13)

"Although I be the basest of mankind,
From scalp to sole one slough and crust of sin,
Unfit for earth, unfit for heaven, scarce meet
For troops of devils, mad with blasphemy,
I will not cease to grasp the hope I hold
Of saintdom, and to clamour, mourn and sob,
Battering the gates of heaven with storms of prayer,
Have mercy, Lord, and take away my sin."
Lord Alfred Tennyson