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Sin Sobrecubierta. Published by Carabela, Barcelona About this Item: Carabela, Barcelona, Condition: Bien. Published by Carabela, Barcelona, , Madrid About this Item: Carabela, Barcelona, , Madrid, Under a lush eucalyptus — transplanted to my dream garden from one I knew in my childhood — stood a group of infrarrealistas poets, like the ones I had feared when I was a young writer. They used to thwart the readings of other poets. But I had no wish at all to join them. I did not want to die. Near them were friends from my teenage years, all beautiful — Alicia, Marisa, Maite, Rosi — and Hannah, who would die in her twenties during the Salvadoran civil war.
They were sitting on the grass, all bare legs and miniskirts, chatting away. Circling them with long strides, dashing young men with slim-cut and shiny trousers pretended to ignore them. Behind a luxuriant fern, my first boyfriend, just a teenager, was kissing a young lady, who was not me. Among the grown-up friends, attitudes differed from group to group. Some of them — writers and publishers — talked amiably, laughing from time to time. They were having fun.
My girlfriends switched expressions as they recalled different passages through which we had lived together. Other friends, were there just for the free drinks, assumed a serious demeanor, so as not to appear frivolous.
9788484286516 - Los Círculos De La Muerte by Gunnar Staalesen
More than one of the assemblage was celebrating my impending death as if it were some kind of personal triumph. One red maned but balding visitor circumspectly looking down at his shoes, seemed troubled. A dog bounded from one circle to another. I recognized him as the one that had bit me in a park when I was very young. Wandering among my friends was the poodle that had grown up with my brothers. I had picked up a wilted purple orchid, now faded to pink, one of the many that grew in the living room pots, and manipulated it with my fingers.
The orchid, almost brittle, though not yet in a fragile condition, seemed to be invincible. It conveyed to my hand a serene pleasure that soothed my soul, a sensation similar to that experienced by those who finger the rosary. It was a sensual pleasure, an honest one. With it, I was taking leave of my life. A pair of fat tears escaped his eyes. He wanted to look strong for me. I do not know if I closed my eyes. Maybe I did. I stopped seeing. I knew I was in a tunnel, being suctioned by a powerful force.
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I saw — possibly not with my eyes — that the tunnel had two ends. One opened onto an intensely bright light, the other led to absolute darkness. The suction appeared to be dragging me towards the dark. I stopped breathing. The only perceptible sound came from my thumping heart. The tunnel itself was in motion, it seemed to contract and release, but the different end points of light and darkness remained the same.
Then everything froze, as if my surroundings and I had turned into a photograph. My heart constricted, then stopped altogether. In that instant I realized I had arrived at the famous crossroad, the moment in which one had twelve seconds to make a life or death choice. Which end of the tunnel, the dark or the light? I believed that light meant death. A long time ago I had read a book that my friend Adolfo gave me about the experiences of people who were technically dead but came back to life.
All of them described the intense light of death.
I had heard this before; poets had long known it, as had fabulists and story tellers. I relied on that bookish wisdom. If I wanted to live, therefore, I had to strive for the darkness.