Saturday, 16 May 2009

Felt a Tango

I walk down the street, watching the ground disappear under my feet, under each step, which I take slowly, languidly. This never-ending grey pavement flows continuous, endlessly, in a monotony broken only by a crossing street, an open whole in the ground, a kiosk, a terrace, by the many who cross my way making me zigzag every now and then. I'm walking and watching. I watch people, coffee houses, stores. I watch the sun going down in the distance, with its fading light, giving way for the night to arrive, little by little, only to keep on the mess that reigns during the day. I'm walking and looking at the horizon in front of me, at the end of this endless street of Buenos Aires, of this Buenos Aires of endless streets. I can't see pink palaces nor colourful tin-made houses. I can't see old buildings that line up continuously nor modern buildings in a port stolen from nature. I can't even see euphoric people making the stands tremble at the pace of emotion and goals, neither parks, large avenues, the river turned into sea, I can't see any of these things. The long hours spent walking are used to look at who's around, who passes by. Thinking, feeling. Feeling the thick air entering my nostrils, hearing the cars running in the streets, watching those who like myself walk continuously. I wonder what each passerby is thinking about, what each of them is feeling, but I immediately get lost in my own thoughts, in that smile that keeps coming to my mind, though I see it further and further away. I smile as well, thinking of friends, of how good it was to feel like family among them while sharing 'mates', 'asados', drinks, never-ending chats... But the same smile keeps coming to my mind, to remind me of other beautiful moments, lived now as well as before, lived in a heartbeat, which now slowly fade away, bringing the nostalgia of a present that rapidly turns into past, even though I kick and flounder. Instead I move on, walk through the night, kicking against the pavement, dancing with the unknown people that crosses my way, sharing with them this pavement, this city, this very moment. A distant and muffled sound drags my feet towards a music. I follow them. I let this sweet melody take control of me and the moment control my senses. My eyes dance in the feet and bodies that move slowly, passionately, twisting around each other, involving each other, falling in love with each other. I feel the sound with my fingertips and down my spine, through where slowly descends a tango that I taste with the nostalgia of a smile. I hear without knowing what I'm listening to, listening what I can't hear, listening to my heart instead that sings this way:

"Vos sos sonrisa en mi boca, la sonrisa que no está,
Vos sos la luz que ilumina mi Buenos Aires,
Sos la tristeza de un adiós que no quería,
El feo adiós de una sonrisa que se fue.

Sos el todo de una pasión, de un lindo sueño,
Vos sos un tango que bailó dentro de mi,
Sos ese tango que aun baila dentro de mi corazón,
Vos sos el tango que bailé pero se fue.

No te vayas de mi vida! Ya te fuiste...
No te olvides lo lindo que fue lo nuestro,
Ya me voy pero el dolor aquí se queda,
Porque tan solo tu sonrisa está en mi.

Vos sos el tango Argentino que bailó un Portugués,
Sos la nostalgia que cambió, vos sos saudade!
Serás, mi linda, para siempre una sonrisa,
Dulce pasión que me prendió a Buenos Aires.

My feet decide to move down the street once more and the pavement starts to unwind under them. The tenuous light follows the sound that is also fading, slowly, which I can hear further and further away, like a nostalgia that stays while I go away. I follow nothing but my own footsteps. Inside I am still dancing this tango that plays endlessly, although it is also fading away, little by little...

Buenos Aires, Argentina, April 2009

Sunday, 3 May 2009

Any tale will do...

While looking at the amazing amount of water that falls continuously in front of me I start to wonder about how everything started. The Guarani Indians have their own explanation about the waterfalls formation in a beautiful tale, which I could just jot down here. But I decide to write my own instead. I close my eyes, feel the water sprinkles in my face and let my imagination flow down the falls...

"Once upon a time, back in the days when gods still wandered the Earth, there was a little river. Well, it was more like a little stream, winding down through tree roots and rocks, with no rush or destination, just flowing. Especially because what he really loved was to feel every turn of his way, every place he passed by, delighting himself with the different temperatures and tastes of every rock, tree, grain of soil, of each animal that drank from his water. In fact he was so happy that he started sighing of joy, especially when he passed by his favourite place, a place where a pink rock made him feel different, very happy, a happiness he could not describe. The rock also loved feeling the little stream pass by, letting herself get involved by him, delighted with the freshness that cut through the forests' strong heat. One day without knowing how they fell in love. The stream ran faster just to meet the rock that responded anxiously with a sweet chant, hoping the stream would never loose his way to her.
Some day a random god
heard the chant while wandering the Earth's surface. He stopped, investigated where the chant came from and found the little pink rock. The chant was so beautiful that he fell in love instantly. From then on he started to come everyday to hear the rock, staying each day longer and longer. He spent so much time listening that he realized the little rock didn't sing to him, but that chant and sigh were the same, the result of a passion that was not his own. Blinded by envy, the god decided to pull out the rock to take her with him, so that she could be exclusively his forever. As soon as he did that the little rock started to cry, out of so much pain and sadness, as she didn't feel her loved stream pass by anymore. Crying, she begged to be returned to her original place, as she could no longer live away from her little stream. Hearing this, and bewildered by anger of jealousy, the god shouted: "So you don't want to be mine and live forever in the glory of my eternal company and beauty? Then you won't be with anyone else either!" And clenching his fist he punched the rock against the ground, sinking her in the huge crater he opened, hiding her forever from her loved little stream.
Seeing all happening in front of him and unable to do anything about it, the little stream shouted loudly, a deep roar of immense pain heard all-around the place. And he also started to cry, crying, more and more, unable to stop. Hearing the roar and the intense crying his brothers, cousins, neighbours, all came to see what was happening. When they arrived the stream noticed he was getting stronger and that if more streams joined him maybe they could together excavate the bottom and find his loved pink rock. So they all roared together and called more and more streams and rivers, growing its flow, which going vertiginously down the cliff started to excavate the rock bed bellow.
To this day the then little stream still flows continuously, using his and his brothers strength in his endless search for his loved one. No-one knows for sure if they already met, but some say they
already did, living happily under the bed of the Iguaçu, hidden behind the falls, while the great water applauds endlessly the sweet chant of the two lovers.

Iguaçu Falls, Brazil/Argentina, March 2009