Each and every one
Each and every window of this city
is just some different perspective: unless we go
into details, perhaps, we shall not enter history.
I have sat here, a hundred and twenty meters from my home,
to sharpen the same nail; I work hard at it, I don’t fall sleep.
Thieves pass by, working people, a man falls, he is aided.
Like a TV scene, I have watched him fall
in the rectangle of the shop window.
A strange situation, some continue talking,
others speak on their cell phones, someone calls an ambulance.
If you put me just a hundred meters from my home
I won’t go too far with the thread of Ariadne. And yet
at that moment, I’ve been in several places at the same time, like an aleph.
If I was left in charge of the details, if men did not fall from heaven
if in some parts of reality everything took a different course,
while others keep the rhythm, then I would be able to understand.
But the city as a collective case
in which interchanges are made,
where you sweat, where you accomplish a planetary and comprehensible life,
includes accidents. This is why firefighters, ambulances.
My life, which persists in details, is not out of program.
Our own life is an abstract life.
Between the hole where we scrape
seeking for revelations, and those branches moved high in the air
there is no correspondence. Of course, Baudelaire:
we are surrounded by familiar symbols. These symbols are… how can I put it?,
extremely familiar: traffic signs, traffic lights, horns.
A forest of absolutely familiar symbols. The faces are
familiar symbols. The billboards are familiar symbols.
But if we leave the familiar tissue in which we move,
we will find a new and foreign grammar.
Look at that tree, Baudelaire: out of this forest, he moves his arms
as if he were part of the great orchestra of the woods or plains.
Because the wind moves the trees, the papers and the cables,
but everything is moving in its own convulsions, inattentive.
Now you too lean to sip your coffee, Baudelaire.
We both incline our submissive heads.
Yet we barely give ourselves up.
I know that in your sharp eyes the diamond shines.
And your tight mouth, oblique, is like the line
of purple light from some distant dawn I ignore:
dawn of other regions, igneous.
Even if we were attacked by planetary spaceships,
your vital mystery, concrete, inaccessible,
would keep balance
in that kind of smile of yours, between wise and bitter
drawn in the seemingly abandoned temples
and where you have seen, you see now, the panthers of I don’t know which cruel cult
grim, gregarious, which is celebrated with flowers and obsidian knives.
Jorge Aulicino, Buenos Aires,1949
en "El árbol de Baudelaire" del Libro del engaño y del desengaño, Ediciones en Danza, Buenos Aires, 2011
versión © Silvia Camerotto
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