Tuesday, September 22, 2009

It comes with the territory...


Is the human condition one of constant struggle? Today I've had a media overload. From the vitriolic speech of tea-baggers to the incessant crudeness of reality shows. I have to be very selective when it comes to watching TV. It's heartbreaking to realize that so much energy is put on sensationalism. But we cannot blame TV nor media for all our troubles.
It was Pride weekend here in Dallas, I volunteer to help at my church's booth. I belong to a very progressive church that is totally inclusive of diversity. It felt wonderful to celebrate our victories as an oppressed group and reaffirm our wishes for the future. On the way back to the car, I had to walk 10 blocks south from where the Pride event was taking place. I saw poverty all around me. Too many dilapidated buildings and houses inhabited by fellow Latinos. They seem particularly quiet, very quiet indeed in comparison to the party going on to the north of their neighborhood. They seemed to be lost in their thoughts. There were about ten or twelve people all together sitting in one yard watching a couple of kids play soccer. They looked tired and bored. They didn't make much noise either.
Some rejoice and others suffer. What a strange symphony. When I was a student of Tibetan Buddhism my lamas taught me to chant for the liberation of suffering and its cause. It is simply complicated. But I know hope transforms the lives of people. The worst thing a human being can be is hopeless. Hope is a call for love and realization. A loud and crystal clear call. I believe happiness exists, it might not be what you imagine it is. It might be even better.
I'm growing lots of hope in my mind-garden, so much indeed that I want to share it with everybody. I'm asking you, friends, Is the human condition one of constant hope?

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Mary Travers (1936-2009)


Mary Travers from the group Peter, Paul and Mary passed away today at the age of 72 after a battle with leukemia. It saddens me a great deal since PP&M has always been one of my favorite groups. The harmonious simplicity of their songs have always resonated with that part of my soul that celebrates life. Her voice was as sweet as honey. She was one authentic and soulful artist. She will be missed.








Friday, September 11, 2009

Rain


One of those precious moments in life. Pretzel softly grunting at the downpour; Brownee, the new pup, asleep in my arms. I'm alone in the apartment, dusk has just hit the blinds letting in the last wet purple rays of the dying sun in the bedroom. I'm listening to CalmRadio, an Internet radio station that plays soft and glorious piano music. And I wonder how fast this very moment will melt away in time. So many worries these past months. What makes me a man? What makes me a human being? Is it my identity, my social persona, my likes and dislikes? A thunder clap has just shot across the horizon. Satori. A zen-like revelation on impermanence. Or rather a permanent impermanence. I love to play with words in the same way that a master painter uses shades, textures and hues to depict the landscape of his mind. Where has my depression led me? It has carved a groove, a distinctive groove in my life. But not always a bad one. Since childhood I've been melancholic in nature. I always felt I could time travel through space if I put my mind on it. If fascinated by certain age or time period I would submerge myself in the art, literature, geography and architecture of the period. I secretly long for eras I never lived: turn of the century London, Renaissance Italy, Athens under Pericles, Pre-Columbian North America.
The soothing tickles of the soft melodies of the piano and the dancing rain in my window bring me a rare feeling of solace. Quietly, I breath in and out the atmosphere that has manifested magically in this moment. Just that.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

On the Elegance of Dinner Parties






It was a particularly common Thursday. I did laundry in the morning and in the afternoon I prepared fish with white rice. A couple of days ago I went to see Julia and Julie with some friends. As I ate I couldn't help but thinking about all the fabulous dinner parties I've seen on the screen throughout my life. From the philosophical My Dinner With André (1981) to the riveting luscious 19th century banquet displays in The Age of Innocence (1993). Who can also forget Babbette's Feast (1987)?, based on a short story by Isak Dinesen. Dinner can be a dramatic counterpoint to a dull day. When people gather at a dinner table they participate in one of the oldest ritual known to man, sharing. Today I imagine wild red roses flowing from a aquamarine epergne; a tea stained Battenberg lace tablecloth, crisp and flowing at the same time; my long gone set of Fostoria Depression glassware featuring tall, elegant cobalt blue stems. Elegance is a perfect equation of joy and generosity. To aim for beauty has long being the obsession of mankind. Elegance is beauty presented as a gift. It has little to do with money or wealth. True elegance is about sharing. Who can be elegant and selfish? A fool no doubt.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

It Was a Hazy Tuesday Morning...I Saw The Fire Within.




The eternal flame wailing...the watershed of your defiance...your glorious tenderness...the hope of angels.....random poetic phrases. There has always been a fire burning inside of me....As a child I ventured with Homer into fantastic worlds of Cyclops and the golden fleece....the bravado of Red-Hot Riding Hood, a jazzy take in cartoon form of the traditional tale.....Japanese proto-anime Astroboy rocketing into space to save the world...Sparkling stars...endless Caribbean Ocean, dignified Palm Trees swaying in the wind like a mythical Isadora Duncan doing her expressionistic Wundertanz...I feel so much, so deeply, so metaphorical...so passionate...so atavistic...so vibrant and colourful...and yet I live in a mostly blind world...maybe I am the blind one, who knows? I crave for a place where art and music are honored as blessings in one's life. I crave for a commUNITY where dance and poetry can overcome prejudice and ignorance. Oh, yeah...I heard it all before, so many times...I'm so naive...so very naive....and silly, and a fool, and idealistic to the extreme, and a dreamer, and ethereal to a fault, and impractical, and a weak link in today's dog eats dog world. I have heard it all before.
I am burning inside, and its a variegated flame, some call it an eternal flame, I call it a life giving flame. I see its reflection in the artists that I meet, in the music that dares to to celebrate the human spirit amidst the honks and clangs of urban traffic.
The beauty of your embrace.
The dignity of your very special dance.
The triumph of your colours against the deadly gray.
The echo of your song that penetrates the walls of doom and bring hope to all.
The Love that you bring into this sea of humanity.


I AM AN ARTIST
I AM AN ARTIST

did you hear me?

I AM AN ARTIST

I want to celebrate with you.

Friday, September 4, 2009

Waiting for a call






A phone call away. I've been waiting all day long for a call. I've had two interviews in this establishment. "We'll let you know either way by Friday" she said.

I'm in that place where you are hopeful and pessimistic at the same time. It's Anxiuosland. It's a land of the absurd, illusive (worst than Alice in Wonderland), where words are a game to be played inside your head and where expectations are like daggers through your heart. And yet I know I am much more than this nerve wracking moment. I can soar pass Anxiousland from a single leap forward. I am a human being that has followed a long and winding life path. An unique path at that. I have made this path for me using all the Love I could gather, all the hopes that a person has in her or his heart.

In the meantime I keep breathing, dancing, loving.

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Ted Kennedy 1932-2009


















The first time I ever cast a ballot was for Ted Kennedy in the Democratic Party primaries in early 1980. I had just turned 18. Even though he lost his presidential bid I learned that there is always hope in the democratic process. I am one vote and so are you. We are powerful. I was taught from an early age that it was my civic duty to go out and vote. Dad was a lawyer and mom came from a very influential political family in Puerto Rico. A deep belief in the sacredness of the democratic process was paramount in our education. For some reason Ted Kennedy represented that process for me. I know he was part of a big intriguing political family and I also know of his less than perfect personal life but he represented what you could do with your own personal power. You can change the world. Some of us are way less influential but every step I take is a step forward, I'm heading somewhere, always accompanied by both my experiences and my values as a human being. I'm so grateful that we live in a democracy. I know is way less than perfect and that so many of us minorities have struggled to have our basic rights being respected. I hope we can come to a satisfactory conclusion in our health care debate and be able have true equality for all. Ted Kennedy championed these and many more causes. He will be missed.

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Summer of 1978
























I have been thinking so much of the sea lately. It's no coincidence James Joyce called it "our mother" in his Ulysses. It's been almost a whole year since I have seen the vast ocean. As a Caribbean man, the sea has always been my backdrop, my life's wallpaper so to speak. I often think of the magical summer days I lived in small villas or rented houses in Puerto Rico's Northeast coast. While I was growing up my family would spend two full months on the beach each year during the 60's and 70's. From resort-like Dorado with its white and peaceful coves to the raging surf of Humacao's Palmas del Mar. I distinctively remember July of 1978 at Palmas del Mar. I was about 15 years old. It was a summer of tennis and backgammon as I remember it. The soundtrack from Grease and an Euro-disco band Voyage was all the rage in those days. We were discovering that we fancied adulthood. Me and my beach buddies would do anything we could to imitate adults. We thought adulthood was about pleasure, pure and simple. We would smoke behind close guarded doors and sip rum and coke until we got nauseated. It was a cool thing to do back then. We would be on our bikes all day long with our swimming trunks underneath our clothes so we could rush to the beach or the swimming pool as soon as we wanted. These were formative years for me. I started to find my own identity in the late hours we stayed out by the Mediterranean style villas bathed by the Atlantic Ocean. I remember the mystery and seduction of the starry nights in the marina. Young golden men and vibrant women wearing blue eye shadow were the inhabitants of this world.
Memory is a fantastic editor, I must add. I also felt the angst of inadequacy back then. I had mild acne and was overweight, but boy did I dream back then...I imagined my future life to be full of love and happiness. I was too naive to realize the complexity of my world, present and future.









But these summer days gave me the wonderful gift of discovery. Now, the glaring sun had baptized me into adulthood. Indescribably sensuous adulthood. I could never go back again, my universe was forever changed, I began to dream like an adult, thirsty for adventure, hungry for love.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

A Magic Carpet














Trying to fly as high as I can. It's been a day full of promises, several job leads, one phone interview. How much would I love to ride on a magic carpet. Sweeping across the land. It's a strange world this one we are living. Speed is our new god. Acceleration is the highest virtue. It seems like that to me. We have gone insane. We are led to believe that whoever is slow or just takes his or her time will be left behind. I seldom feel I am rushing to nowhere. I crave an open green space where I can quietly sit with a book and a cup of tea. I read Arabian Nights when I was 7 or 8 and marveled about flying carpets. It would definitely be a cozy way to travel around.
I am a very visual individual, and I imagined to fly on a peacock blue Persian rug, what I later came to know as a birjan rug. Intricate patterns interwoven through thousands of silken threads. But isn't life like a magical flying carpet? You are the master weaver. You always carry your pattern with you. You have created this pattern, bit by bit, year after year. The colors are your joys, your tears, your epiphanies and your defeats. A weaver takes time to make a beautiful rug. Then why do we settle with a mass produced bland looking version of a magic carpet?

Monday, August 17, 2009

One morning at the Job Club
























Merciful Heavens! I had a bit of a busy day today. I've joined a job club at my local church. It has proven to be quite good since you get support and help of other fellow unemployedlings. In this case 12 heads think better than one, mine. So your efforts in trying to land a job get multiplied by the ideas and feedback offered by others. This period of unemployment has been unprecedented in my life. It's goes beyond my economic situation. It's a feeling, strange as it is, that my soul is unemployed. Let me explain. This last year has been the most devastating year in my life. I lost my anchor in life, my mom, suddenly, without any kind of suspicion about her health. I found her lifeless in her apartment. I'm dealing with the loss in all ways that I can, still it hurts like nothing I have experienced before. Six months later, I made the decision to move to Texas with my brother. I needed to escape the loneliness I was feeling inside, I started to hate the very place I lived for so many years, as if it had something to do with her death.
I could not stand living in the island, maybe I was projecting my inner feelings and found Puerto Rico to be the cause of death both my mother's and my dreams. To some, probably many, it would seem childish to blame a country. Maybe I'm childish, who knows?But I cannot possibly tell you how isolated and hopeless I felt living in a place where I had very few friends left and where I did not relate to the beach culture of the Caribbean.
I saw an open door...Texas. And here I am . I do not know if it's going to be my last destination, but I'm trying my luck like everybody else.

At the job club I mentioned the fact that I was shy when it came to introduce myself to people I did not know. They look at me as if I was from planet Jupiter. Shy? Are you insecure or something? Someone asked. What am I suppose to answer? For some reason I saw the humor in it, it was a most impolite question, it put me on the spot...but it made me laugh at the impertinence of the woman that made the question. She reacted the same way someone would react to something that was disliked like a certain color or a certain type of music. Maybe I'm too Victorian or Edwardian about manners but I think this blabbermouth of a person was rude. I displayed my humble panache in answering...you mean this is not the Insecure Anonymous group?, then I stood up in mock confusion. They all laughed. I have to go into actor mode to overcome my social shyness. Of course it's based on insecurities....may I say a big and loud DUH!
So I'm discovering the New World all over again. Injecting colors and forms into my Self to reanimate my quest for true joy. Who wants to dance with me? What are you doing to inject passion into your life? I would love to know. Bunch of hugs and kisses to all, you are succulent people.


I had to buy these yellow roses, I saw them at the flower shop in Bloggyville, they remind me of frindship and luxury.

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Hey, I'm just human.



















I'm alive, thank you so much for sending me e-mails reminding me of how loving the blogging community really is. I've been semi-retired lately from writing due to a bout with depression. I often thought about writing but I could not commit my thoughts to the blog. I'm feeling better now and I'm planning to share the comings and goings of my personal landscape with all of you. I'm healing from this depression I just mentioned about. I am very idealistic, I think, and for that same reason I get disappointed by people and situations much too often. I know art, spirituality, colors, books and music can be healing agents too, so are flowers, sunsets and trees, and laughter, so I intend to keep on writing in spite of my depressive condition and unemployment. I beg you all forgiveness for abandoning my post during these hard times. Is good to be back. Love and Peace to all.


I put some red roses here to enjoy their beauty and perfume. I am a hopeless romantic at heart.

Monday, July 6, 2009

TV Wasteland


I've reached the point when I'm about to toss the TV set out of the window. Too bad it isn't my TV set. Michael Jackson is dying in front of us 24/7. I'm sorry he is dead. But I can't stand it anymore. It is a circus out there. Morbid curiosity is nothing new, but I am afraid to turn on the TV because all they are showing is revolting. All I see is reality shows featuring the most uncouth, selfish and narcissistic individuals on earth, followed by more reports on the death of MJ... I only feel safe watching Turner Classics and PBS. I might just as well stop watching TV and start to catch up on my netflix queue. To all TV programmers out there: If you give people JUNK all of the time they are going to get used to it and lower their own standards. Of course you know all about it, you want it to go thet way.

I need my Bach, my Chagall, my Thoreau, my Tagore to keep me sane these days.

Sunday, June 28, 2009

A Rainbow of Possibilities


I just came back form the Million Gay March in Dallas. The heat was incredible, around 105 degrees. As I marched, I thought of all those who marched for equal rights for the last 40 years. Four decades ago riots broke in Greenwich Village, New York after a gay bar was raided by the police. This has been identified as the starting point for the struggle for equality for Gay, Lesbian, Bi-Sexual and transgendered people in the United States. The rainbow flag, symbol of the diversity in our community, was flying high and proud today. We are not celebrating our sexual identity or orientation. We celebrate the fact that we have chosen freedom over persecution, dignity over oppression and Love above all. May future generations never have to struggle and suffer in order to embrace who they really are, human beings, loving beings. I say Amen to that!

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Suddenly This Summer.


Just came back from the library. I have been doing research on alternative career paths. To tell you the truth, it is actually a lot of fun. You must make a good assessment of your skills and your style of performing in the workplace. Is what they call a "holistic" assessment. The human mind is an amazing instrument. It can forget so easily. By thinking hard about all the tasks I have performed in my professional career and listing them I have made myself aware that I tend to forget how efficient and thorough I have been on my different jobs. Listing all my previous experiences and how I used my ability to analyze, synthesize, communicate made me feel better automatically. How could I have forgotten my ability to be tactful and diplomatic when explaining a difficult situation to my fellow co-workers.? How could I have forgotten about the time when I worked for two months successfully trying to sort out a contract dispute between photographers and a publishing company? I always felt I was handicapped because I have held more than 15 different jobs and because I speak English with a Spanish accent. These "handicaps" were hidden talents. On one hand I am highly adaptable to any job situation, on the other I have a unique bi-cultural perspective. How could I've been so blind?
I hope I can maintain the vision, the "I am a success" vision and not get sidetracked by dreadful comparisons to other people with different circumstances. Or sidetracked by the limiting impositions of my mind that expects to achieve, achieve and achieve without rhyme nor reason. Frustration should be seen as a pink flag ( we do not have red flags at the ranch) warning you to change your perspective in order to see the truth of the matter. In the meantime I breathe and do my homework.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Quietly, I cry


Damn Fear!!!! It has ruled my life, it has ruined my life, do not take me wrong, I am a courageous kind of guy. But fear, if I only understood you completely, if only I knew the antidote...It has been said time and time again that Love is the antidote.

Hail Love!!!! It has ruled my life, it has constructed my life, do not take me wrong, I am a courageous kind of guy. But Love, If I could only understood you completely, if only I knew how to make you appear in my life instantly....It has been said...

Mindful debates in times of financial desperation.

I want to scream, I am so frustrated. But I also want to sing and dance and laugh. And hug friends.

I am trembling with anxiety. I wish I could see my mother again. She died last year. I'll tell her all about my predicaments, my sorrows and my joys. Her loss is like a dagger through my heart. Yet, I believe in Love, in tenderness, in goodwill, in peace and in kindness. I do not have to understand everything, do I?

Pretzel, my dog, rushes up to me. In a swift move he jumps on my lap and starts licking up my teary cheeks.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

This is my mountain and I' m climbing it


Hot wind blowing from the south, the heat index is at 105 degrees Fahrenheit in the fair city of Dallas, Texas. Have you ever stuck your head in the oven to see if the roast is ready.?It is that hot but no roast at sight. I decided to made some fresh salmon with pink mashed potatoes (just add a small amount of beets until it takes the exact hue of pink you desire.) It's one of those times when you have 7 books you want to read and cannot make your mind which one to read first. It is one of those times when you change your mind every other second. I have too much time on my hands, I guess. Something I would..oops the dog is throwing up, I must go.

OK, I'm back, the salmon is almost ready, I have yet to clean the rug with Pretzel's "return of food." But I must finish this brief post with a final thought, rather a quote from an unknown person, at least to me: If the mountain was smooth you couldn't climb it. So we all need friction, traction, good hiking boots, roughness and whole lotta faith if we going to get from here to there. I feel anxious, it is no use denying it. But I have chosen my path, up the mountain. I have never thought of myself conventional or even rational to tell the truth. But it is all about YOUR TRUTH, the one I discovered, the one that was revealed to me while I wandered through life. Yes, I live in the steep mountain. Sometimes I just get tired of the difficult climb, but the view from here is breathtaking, its majestic, glorious and full of Love.

Friday, June 12, 2009

Slippery Sleep


I have been sleeping all day long. I have a vivid imagination. So I have been fantasizing about living in a place where there is no unemployment and where people can earn their living by being creative and dynamic. Some people manage to live their dreams. I'm still trying to figure it out. The artist in me wants to come out permanently. But I keep pushing it back, afraid I will not be "good enough" to earn a living doing what I want. I'm being sincere. I wish I could resolve the paradoxical equation that is up in my mind. The world has always yelled "do what makes you happy" at me. The same world has also yelled "but you should choose a career that offers you stability and financial support." Today I feel I'm still 18 and trying to figure things out. But life is a funny business. It's complex and compromises must be made. Today I am oversleeping, not wanting to get up, I suppose. It's a temporary thing. My mind needs a little bit of rest and pampering. But I must get balance and structure back in my life soon. I would have never expected life was going to be like this when I was growing up. It seems to me that when I was younger I really thought life was something you earned as reward for your effort. I am little bit older now and I believe you are the creator of your life and as you create you are prone to make mistakes, have second thoughts and learn throughout the process. To nurture your wounded soul you need not to treat it as a little defenseless baby but as a human being that needs to filter out the negative and let the positive set in. I have been oversleeping today, like a little baby. It's time to call the architect within and get going with those blueprints.

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Old Objects, New Life




Could anxiety be a trumpet sounding off for you to pay attention to the important and forget about unimportant details? Well I'm having a wind ensemble orchestra inside my head lately. It's just the Unemployment Jitterbug. This afternoon I watch a rerun of Antique Roadshow (PBS version) and got all inspired about finding more about all the little objet d'art I have collected inside my brain for the last 20+ years. I cannot possibly afford what I want. I do not even think if I had the money I would buy that many antiques. I am thrilled by the stories behind the objects. It's a little bit of an answer to the philosophical Ubi sunt? (Where are they?). Antiques are proof that the past existed, really existed and had function and aesthetics working together for the common good. An Émile Gallé vase, a Philadelphia highboy, a Hokusai woodblock print they all constitute a legacy of beauty or at least the search for beauty. I like simple elegance. It has nothing to do with status symbol. Elegance is a respite from the fast and furious pace of modernity. It is a streamlined marriage between function and form. Antiques remind me of this union. Quietly watching this show calm my anxieties because I am focusing on the ability of us human to create beauty and to present it as a higher accomplishment.

Friday, June 5, 2009

The League of Clueless Impulsive Superheroes

Well it is time to move on, or at least keep moving. I need some little pampering; better, I need creative healing. I went down to Michael's and bought myself a sketchbook, a set of Staedtler's fine liner markers in assorted colors, color pencils and a black fine tip sharpie. Yes, I can be THAT wild and reckless. I then went to Barnes & Nobles, (I always call it Darns & Bubbles, for no exact reason) and bought two books. One is the quintessential job hunting bible What Color Is Your Parachute? 2009 by Richard N. Bolles. I have read this book about four times since the early 80's. It is the best ever. It is a translator of skills. Let me explain, the book helps you identify and label skills you didn't know you even had. it is a true and reliable job hunting compass. It is the original morph book. You can easily morph into many rewarding careers using the skills and experience you already have. The other book I bought was Juicy Pens Thirsty Paper by SARK. I have been a fan of this succulent San Francisco based Artist/Writer/Philosopher/Woman that run with the wolves or just rides on the cable cars genius. I love her as if I knew her. This is a must to have if you want to re-energize your creative juices. Let them flow, baby! So I am drawing, reading, drinking more coffee than usual, walking with Pretzel and eating fruit (I just bought the most delicious nectarines in Whole Foods on Lemmon Ave. They tingled with sweetness, it was an erotic experience)
Later last night I went to Starbucks and sat with my quadruple shot latte with 19 Splendas (Yes. I am exaggerating.) Pull out my magic markers and started doodling. It occurred to me to call myself the Shameless Doodler. We need superheroes these days. So I became one. I started doodling left and right, choosing colors like a demon possessed Pollock. People stared, I could not care less, I was on a mission to save the planet. Extravagant doodles and swirls started to appear on the blank pages. Green lines intersecting turquoise stars. Little pink suns with brown sunglasses. Strange looking castles and sketchy acanthus leaves.
Suddenly the door opened, it was a vision to behold. A middle aged woman came in holding an oversize uncompleted afghan. She was wearing a shirt that said Fearless in fluorescent green letters. She sat down at a table and started to knit. It was no other than the Fearless Knitter a most needed super hero. I am not making this up, I swear. The superheroes started manifesting themselves. Soon enough Caffeine Java Man was making the rounds offering us little sips of caffé macchiato. The League of Clueless Impulsive Heroes came to be.
Life has its ups and downs. It always has and always will. I have suffered from anxiety and depression most of my life. I have been told time and time again that I am TOO sensitive. I tell them- "No!- I am MORE sensitive" If we really take time to listen to our inner selves we can really understand that we are unique individuals. It is useless and painful to compare yourself to others. You will suffer excessively if you define yourself by others. I just took my frustration dealing with the loss of a potential good job and transformed it to something positive and creative. Energy is transferable. Hatred can become compassion, frustration can become creativity. You are using exactly the same energy. You choose.

A wish: I wish I can use my energy and talents in a creative and dynamic career that benefit people in wonderful and miraculous ways. This is my affirmation for today.




Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Yesterday I Had A Cow, Today The Cow Is Dead.


I'll be brief. I called this morning to explain my situation about taken the wrong test. I invested time and money these past 4 months trying to get into the Alternative Certification Program for the Dallas ISD. I have spent at least $300 dollars in application fees, test fees, and courses. I invested hours on writing essays in both English and Spanish, researching bilingual teaching, meeting several times for interviews with officials. I took two part-time jobs to be able to afford the gas and the fees. I was told this morning that not only my money will not be reimbursed, but that is useless to take the "right" test now because it would be too late for me to be included in the program. So I will not be admitted as a teacher for 09-10. Misinformation and unclear instructions cost me my future livelihood. As simple as pressing the "wrong" button in the computer when I registered for that test one month ago. It is as if they want to get rid of the good candidates, and damn it I am a good candidate fluent in three languages and well versed in history, art and literature. (Please mind my immodesty, but I need to get it out!) I just do not understand. Am I being to naive? Right now I do not know what I am going to do next. Of course, I must look for another job. I am sad, very sad and frustrated. We have become numbers with a long list of check lists trailing behind us, we are being approved or disapproved impersonally.

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

31 flavors of ice SCREAM


Some people drink, others smoke, I eat ice cream or rather ice SCREAM. As frustrating days go I had a top ten day today. It is all about a test called the EC-4. It must be some kind of cynical joke to call a trick ridden general examination test for teachers in Texas an EC-anything. It was tough, specially when half-way during the examination I discovered, well it was more of a revelation, that I was taking the wrong test. Let me restate. I WAS TAKING THE WRONG TEST. You see I had take a EC-4 test, so I went on-line and registered for it after paying $125. Today I found out there are two different EC-4 tests. To make matter more confusing I was offered a Bilingual Teaching position pending the passing of the EC-4 test. So I registered for the Bilingual EC-4 test. I think it makes perfect sense, but it doesn't make any sense for them (the school district) because I was suppose to take the Generalist EC-4 test. Nobody told me that, I'm fuming, I will have to take a new test and pay $125 again for the right test. So I'm boiling mad and am eating lots and lots of ice SCREAM, French Vanilla with caramel syrup to be exact. Tomorrow I am calling the parties involved in this most confusing situation to see if I can get credit for the wrong-test-I-didn't-study-for that I took this afternoon. I-could-just-hyphenate-myself-to-death-tonight. But dear Scarlett said it best-"Tomorrow is another day."

Saturday, May 30, 2009

I Once Had A Blog


Or should I say, A blog once had me? After several attempts to come back I'm finally here. I have missed you all. It has been a couple of weeks since I have blogged. I took some time off because I got two part time jobs and I did not have access to the Internet. Now I'm back. These few weeks I have missed your blogs, your passionate, living blogs. So full of joy and energy. I missed something I can only identify as the BEAUTY of blogging. For me, it has to do with sharing your crazy thoughts, searching for beauty (not the obvious harmonious one , but the inner one), letting your brain rage with luminous thunderstorms, and sitting down for coffee and blueberry muffins.
I wanted to come back earlier. I yearned for this little blogging joy. I hope you all have forgiven my absence. I was afraid I would come back and find myself with no followers to play cowboys with. Gladly, that's all over.

News: I am becoming a teacher. So a lot of hard work lies ahead. I'm partly scared and partly thrilled. 75% of the people I have told of my most recent vocation have looked me with sad and baffled eyes. They just do not understand why. A teacher?, Why?, Because.... I just want to stick my tongue out and tell them off. Because I believe. Because I have hopes. Because I refuse to be cynical. Because it is a rare honor and privilege to be a mentor, and educator. Because I care. Because there is joy in learning. Because there is beauty in growth. So grow up. Because I might grow up too.

Summer is here. The Texan sun is glaring. I am moving slow. I'm a bit sluggish with this hot weather but I like the deceleration. I also love having an AC and a cool glass of freshly brewed iced tea in my hand. Make it an ice cold beer better. I will put some Copeland on my iPod and pretend I am riding my horse, Pinko, across the Southern Plains. Here's looking at you fellow bloggers.

Saturday, May 2, 2009

The Flickering Blog



















I'm in the middle of a thunderstorm. So I'll be very brief. For two whole days my blog was nowhere to be seen. I only had access to my account. I could write a new post but I could not see the actual page. Today, I finally see my blog in its entirety. This reminds me of one of those beautiful and complicated sand mandalas done by Tibetan monks. After they finish their work they destroy the whole mandala. It is a lesson about impermanence. A blog is also impermanent. I'm glad I got it back. But there are no guarantees. One post at a time. It has been a little exercise on non-attachment. Thanks to my darling bloggers for letting me know that they were able to see the blog. I send you all my pink love.

Friday, May 1, 2009

All is gone. Where is my blog?

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Walking

















New sign at the Pink Ranch


I started walking again today. It's just amazing how exercise clears your mind from all the clutter we have absorbed from our daily lives interactions. Today, as I walked, I saw so many roses I felt I was in some kind of paradise. I could smell the scent as I walked briskly passed them. I have been noticing how everything is so green in North Texas. It is truly a feast for the eyes. It is so simple to go for a brisk walk down your neighborhood. Yet we find one million excuses not to do it. We know is good for the body, the mind and the spirit. But so often we are so easily distracted by petty things. We just put doing exercise at the bottom of our Things To Do list. It not only relieves stress. Walking makes you find a physical and emotional place within a community. Walking "dis-isolates" you. You are part of the whole organism of community once again. As I walk I do positive affirmations (Is this a redundancy?). I am so grateful that all my six senses are functioning. I remember reading Emerson and Thoreau and their deep felt joy and wonder while talking walks. I am going to check out those books again at the library. They are so articulate in defining our humanity and its relation with nature. Walking is an effective antidote for stress. I'm walking again this afternoon. Who knows? I might find new treks, new trees to hug or new ideas.

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Absit Omen













Dearest bloggers. I have been very busy lately in my job search. I just wanted to stop by my own blog and tell you how much I appreciate your visits. My mind is running amok these days with thousands of ideas. I am also a little bit obsessed with twitter, which I joined recently, and feel like writing senseless haiku in less than 140 words every 3 hours. Another obsession: Every day I wake up I go to Wikipedia to check on Recent Deaths. It's a little bit morbid. Strangely enough when I find the name of a celebrity (usually actors or actresses of note) in the death lists my heart misses a beat and I feel melancholic. Then, I miss the celebrity terribly and look for info all over the Net. I think I am going to laugh about this little obsession of mine. Am I turning into my own parents? Later in life they loved to read the obituaries to see if any of their friends or acquaintances passed away. Maybe it made them feel like survivors. In the meantime I hope I don't find myself ever on those dreary lists. Absit Omen.

Saturday, April 11, 2009

Movie Review: The Edge of Love



I went to see The Edge of Love last Thursday at Angelika Film Centre in Dallas. The movie deals with the relationship among Thomas Dylan, the celebrated Welsh poet, his wife and a lover-friend of his. Typical love triangle. But the director went berserk trying to use all available camera shots. The film is more an anthology of different styles of filming than a coherent story about an intense love relationship during WWII in London. In matter of an hour you get to see wide angles, soft angles, kaleidoscopic lenses swirling around, intense close-ups, off-focus, blurs, light outbursts, chiaroscuro techniques, low-angle shots (from below), you name it. They all come in rapid secession without adding anything to the movie. The two actresses, Kaira Knightly and Sienna Miller play the lover and the wife respectively. They do a good job. They are absorbed into their characters and give good straight performances. I expected the role of Thomas Dylan, played by Matthew Rhys, to be more prominent and to offer more insight into his inner demons so to speak. I would not call this film a failure, it is fairly well acted but it fails to rise to the occasion. The films wants to project an intense expressionistic view of love in times of war. The abrupt changes in different types of camera shots is too distracting. It has some redeeming shots though. My favorite is the opening scene where Kaira Knightly is singing a lush tropical ballad in the middle of a German bombardment in a London Underground station. All in all, I did not enjoy it very much. Of course, this is only my most humble opinion.

Monday, April 6, 2009

Pasta Day


It's been a pasta day. Going to the supermarket to buy all the ingredients for my world famous Alfredo sauce. OK it's really Ragu. But an enhanced Ragu at that. I added mushrooms, parsley and my favorite spice ever tarragon. I wish I had a big kitchen and a budget to prepare my favorite recipes. These "between jobs" days call for ready-made inexpensive food. But my heart is in an open market where I can buy fresh produce and breathe in the colors and scents of the fruits of the earth. How poetic! but true. I love those almost stereotypical scenes in movies filmed in Italy. Long old wooden tables with an array of Mediterranean delicacies. Friends and families eating and laughing and choking. OK, leave the choking part out. Do you guys feel the same way about cooking pasta? Now If I have a glass of Chianti in my hands while cooking, then the meal acquires a sublime quality.

I just found out about the earthquake in L'Aquila in central Italy. Those beautiful Italian Renaissance buildings reduced to ruins. It seems that hundred of people have perished. The first thing I thought was that earthquakes do not discriminate. We are so used to hearing about natural disasters in poor and developing countries. But it can happen anywhere, of course. So my heart and my prayers go to those unfortunate people that are left homeless and have lost family members. I'll have my pasta in silence, I do not care to celebrate that much after these terrible news.

Friday, April 3, 2009

Hi, I Have No Name For This Post


For some strange reason I have had difficulty blogging this week. It's a sort of mental hyperventilation. I want to write about Victorian England, Jorge Luis Borges, a visit to IKEA, my own Caribbean experience, my favorite operas, Balenciaga, orange fruits and vegetables, Route 66, Anglo-Norman kings, Ancient Greece and onomatopoeia as a social phenomenon, just to name a few. I've sat down in front of the computer three times to no avail. I have blogger's block.

In cases like this I become silly...ok, goofy in order to melt away the iceberg found in my paralytic mind.


Beetles I Like:

1.Eudicella gralli
2.Trogodendron fasciculatum
3.Acilius sulcatus
4.Ringo Starr
5.Melolontha hippocastani

Favorite songs to hear while I'm driving away from the city:


1. Top of the World- The Carpenters
2. Proud Mary- CCR
3. Driving My Life Away- Eddie Rabbit
4. The Hampster Dance Song- I Have No Idea Who Plays It?
5. Love Is A Many-Splendored Thing- The Four Aces
Favorite anything:

1. Marimekko prints
2. The Palatine Uvula
3. Cuban Timbales Drums
4. Polish Tatra Mountains wooden boxes
5. Macaroni and Cheese

That felt good, nothing like nonsense to rekindle the blogger's soul. Do I hear Chicken Soup for the Blogger's Soul? Please make your contributions in the form of advise to help me overcome this blogger's block.

Monday, March 30, 2009

Shhh, There Is An Orange On Stage




I just ate an orange. So sweet and juicy. I love smelling the peel, it has the scent of springtime. A quiet simple moment. Quiet is what I need. I am, generally speaking, a soft person. Some say I think too much and that I am too idealistic. All through my adult life I hated that harsh judgement on me. I may be MORE idealistic than some, but I am not TOO idealistic. It's a matter of degrees. I was fired Monday morning from my temporary job scoring English compositions. I failed to pass three surprise validation tests. It's ok, it is not the end of the world. But I must say something about the experience.


Such coldness in hiring and dismissing people. I was translated into a percentage number. I did not survive on account of my under 65% number. I will keep on looking for a new job. I am considering becoming a teacher. It will definitely lift me from poverty. But I know first hand the challenges that it would bring. Being a teacher is not an easy job. Teaching will not make any sense if you are not committed to it. Burnout is a reality. In my last teaching job I broke my voice 7 times during the Academic year and had a bout with bronchitis. Still I believe that we can improve our lives through education. Education is the true equalizer among us. Everyone should be given the opportunity of Education. In this I firmly believe.


So I'll keep you posted on that one.




In the meantime, a hot bath, poetry, and oranges.

Saturday, March 28, 2009

Gods and Heroes


"... black-winged night,
into the bosom of Erebus dark and deepLaid a wind-born egg, and as the season rolledForth sprang Love, the longed-for, shinning with
wings of gold."

The Birds, Aristophanes (circa 446-386 B.C.E.)


The wind is blowing fiercely outside and the temperature has dipped into the 30's. I decided to stay home and warm up with a cup of coffee and a book I recently took out from the library. The book, Mythology by Edith Hamilton (1867-1963), was one of my favorite books growing up in the balmy Caribbean. Even though my island was thousands of miles away from the Aegean Sea I could see war clad heroes and immortal gods roaming about the rugged acantilados (sea cliffs) of Borinquen (PuertoRico).


I was a sick child. Bedridden by asthma I took to reading from an early age in order to placate my anxiety. My father lost his first child in Spain due to a very negligent medical system. He was overcautious about any of his children's health issues. I perceived his deep anxiety every time he saw me gasping for air and crying in fear that I might die. Asthma was an existential affair to me. At only six or seven years old I could feel the mayhem I was causing in my home. I was the center of attention because I had to be taken care of and monitored. I vividly remember my father injecting Adrenaline into my arm at 3 o'clock in the morning. My lips had a purplish undertone due to the lack of oxygen. Back then, the 60's, there was limited knowledge on the condition. My Catalonian grandmother, Abita, would sit next to my bed giving me chest rubs with alcoholado (bay rum) filled with eucalyptus leaves. She would pray to the Holy Infant of Prague for my survival. Those prayers still inhabit my soul. They were tender, heartfelt prayers. In moments of fear and panic in my life I go deep inside and connect with the deep vibrating sounds of Abita's husky voice.

One day my father brought me three gigantic books with very colorful illustrations. One of the books was the The Iliad. I was captivated by the stories in that book. I saw myself in them on account that my name is Hector like the Trojan warrior prince. I read about the capricious gods and combatant mortals. From my bed I imagined the real world to be a n heroic saga. These stories whetted my appetite for creativity and critical thinking. The Greek myths are, simply put, lessons in human ethics. A child that learns about the gifts of antiquity in the form of literature and art is a child that realizes that he or she is a vital cultural descendant of those marvelous people that gave us civilization. Zeus, Dionysus, Demeter, Odysseus, the Muses and Medusa the Gorgon stand for the complexity and meaning of our innermost human traits. Love, triumph, defeat, betrayal, happiness and sorrow among them. In our present world we have forgotten our past. We are very much disconnected from the glory and richness of the Ancient World.

This stormy day I feel fragile and a bit distant from the insane speed of our society and the bumpy roads of modernity. I feel reduced to a number (read NUMBer). This is contrary to my spirit. Those readings about gods and heroes give me strength for I know I am the son of their triumphs. I am not longer isolated from my humanity. I am of a race (Human race) that emerged from vicissitude and need. Metaphors are necessary for this voyage. Symbols are important roadsigns. They keep you guided. Symbols clarify the reasons for our longings and infuse our understanding with the vibrancy of life itself. Let the wind blow so I may take refuge in an otherworldly Theban cave where the lyre merrily sings Sapphic poetry of Love and courageous heroes set aside their glimmering helmets for the luminosity of the glowing fire of our human adventure.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Old is Beautiful


I am looking forward to growing old. Very, very old. I would love to see how the little hair I have left turns white. I think it will complement my skin tone and my eyes. I want to look like Gandalf from Lord of the Rings. I wonder if my hands will look like my Basque grandfather ancient hands; brittle and spotted; gentle and warm. I hope I get lots of wrinkles, seriously. You see I love maps and I would like to wear one in my face. Imagine a continent full of bays and peninsulas drawn in your forehead, just gorgeous. By then I would have accumulated hundreds upon hundreds of personal anecdotes. I will soon become a great conversationalist. And I will not be agitated or mortified by hasty people or desperate circumstances because I will be totally convinced that Love conquers all. I think of old age as an elegant waltz full of joy and enchantment.


I have been always fascinated by old people. They are walking encyclopedias of the human experience. Being surrounded my old people enriches my life. I am deeply grateful for them.

Monday, March 23, 2009

Someone calibrate me, please!


Evaluating and being evaluated. I evaluate you and you evaluate me. If your evaluation does not match my evaluation then I must be evaluated. If I evaluate well I am promoted. If I do not evaluate well then I am given a second chance. That second chance is called a calibration. If I am calibrated then I have nothing to worry about. But, if I am not calibrated then I have to take a validation test. There are two outcomes to that specific validation. You can be successfully validated or unsuccessfully invalidated. If you are invalidated you are ousted from the project. You are sent to Devil's island to do hard labor (Read unemployment). But if you are successfully validated then you can start evaluating all over again. And so it goes.

We have achieved a true form of civilized living. I am being ironic, well maybe cynical. Though I hate to be cynical. You see I got a temporary job. I am grateful for it. But I am baffled at the level of supervision and total control of mind and body. You are being timed. You score papers for 7.0 hours. English compositions from 4th and 7th graders. Fair enough. You cannot talk to the person sitting next to you. The supervisor lets you know every hour on the hour what your percentages of accuracy and speed are. "Careful, your validations are running low. You are at 72.5%. And your speed is at 76%, so hurry up, don't think too much", that's my hourly labor lullaby. We humans are strange animals, I must say. Such a need for calibration and validation. I never knew Orwell's 1984 really existed. I am glad I have a job but the only way to get through this one is to laugh at the absurdity of it all. So, if any of you needs to be evaluated or validated let me know I have a place that's perfect for you.

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Happy St. Patrick's To All!


Wishing you the greenest St. Patrick's Day. I listed 5 of my favorite Irish contributions to our world heritage. The Pink Ranch turns kelly green for the week. BEANTAS!





















The Book of Kells- This illuminated manuscript dating back to the 9th century is kept at Trinity College in Dublin. The best calligraphy the Western world has ever seen, in my most humble opinion. The majuscules are exquisite examples of art and religious devotion. A feast for the eyes.

















Turlough Carolan (1670-1738)- The blind harp virtuoso. His composition are evocative of the beauty of the Emerald Isle.










The Anam Cara- The concept of soulful friendship is both inspiring and profound. Its ideals of true intimacy, loyalty and love truly articulate our sacred bonds.














County Donegal- The sweet sounds of Irish can still be heard in along this stunning landscape. As part of the Gaeltacht, designated area where Irish is the predominant language, it is a treasure trove for the study of Irish culture and philology.





















Clannad- One of the most famous Irish music groups. Haunting music that embodies our mystical longing for a world where mystery and revelation are common day occurrences.

Saturday, March 14, 2009

In Praise Of Opera







It is a day for Grand Opera at the ranch. I have been watching my favorite arias on Youtube. Opera has been part of my life since I was a toddler. Dad loved his Verdi and Wagner. I used to sneak into his room and quietly sit in a corner while he was listening to the bombastic sounds of Carmen's "Overture" and the "Anvil Chorus" from Il Trovatore (1853). Back then my world was a strange combination of asthma and Opera. Maybe the symphonic whizzing of my constricted lungs had something to do with it. Opera was my first alphabet. I learned to decipher the desperate emotion in arias such as "O Mio Babbino Caro" from Gianni Schicchi (1918) and the patriotic "Va pensiero" from Verdi's Nabucco (1842) long before I learned how to read and write. Melodies such as that of the aria "Viens, Malika" from Léo Delibes Lakmé (1883) offered an amplitude of feeling and sensitivity to the concept of living and loving. Years later "Ebben? Ne andrò lontana..." from Alfredo Catalani's La Wally (1892) and "La mamma e morta" from Umberto Giordano's Andrea Chenier (1896) would accurately reflect my feelings of irony and loss. Opera is probably the most complete artistic genre ever invented. It combines music, theatre, poetry and song at a grand scale. Opera is a brilliant equation in music form. It gives wings to our ideas and emotions. Operas are sagas for the heart. After I have seen an opera onstage I have come out of the theatre feeling a transformed person. The grand drama of Opera idealizes our life experiences. This idealization of our struggle to survive and persevere gives us the triumphant perspective of the human condition. The experience of Opera immerses us in the intensity of our humanity. The deep, almost overwhelming drama of life and circumstances is what gives the genre its inner fire. The undulating cascades of song and symphonic music create a landscape never to be forgotten after we have left the theatre. In a way, opera combines the indelible memory of music with the vibrancy of an emotional adventure like the human heart only knows.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

This Cowboy Is Riding Again











Five days ago I woke up, shook my empty gallon of Motts Apple Juice container filled with small change and headed for shelter at my local Starbucks. I needed the comfort and the coffee to relax me in these most unemployed days. As I was sipping my coffee I picked up a wrinkled copy of the Dallas Morning News left behind by a hasty customer. I started to read it. A few minutes later a Korean gentleman sitting nearby handed me a section of the newspaper. I was a little bit startled by his broad smile and the fact that he subtlety insisted I take that other section. He did not speak a single word. I figured out he was Korean because he had a shopping bag written in that language. I took that other section of the newspaper timidly, thinking he must have thought the newspaper was mine. The Korean gentleman bowed slightly and left. I finished reading the headlines of the newspaper and took a brief glance at the section handed to me. It was the Employment section. In a second my eyes were focus on a rather small ad by a major educational publishing house looking for test scorers. I rushed home, gathered all the required documents and made an online appointment. Two days later I was taking a lengthy test on the subject of grammar, vocabulary and expository writing. Two hours later I was hired for a two month project. I start tomorrow. Even though it is not a permanent job it is the first job in almost 6 months. I am beyond myself. MIRACLES DO HAPPEN. Fellow cowboys and cowgirls you are tops. I know your positive energy and support made a difference. DARE TO BELIEVE.

Saturday, March 7, 2009

Run, Cowboy, Run


It's been a hectic week for me. Going north and south, around and about this sprawled city looking for a job. I'm going for anything aside of vice or prostitution. Vice sounds nice. Well anyways, it has been a adventure going to hotels, publishing companies, bookstores, supermarkets, rodeos (Just kidding!), pizza delivery shops (I was reminded I needed a car to be able to deliver the pizzas), barista and store clerk. Pretzel, the affable dachsie, only sees me rushing in and out of the apartment. The weather is gorgeous so that helps to keep your spirits up. It feels like I have been thrust in the middle of a rush hour tornado. I've been between jobs for more than 4 months now. The pressure to succeed is so strong it almost paralyzes you. Sounds like a paradox, but it is true. You need to be the best life coach you have ever been. It's a long distance race. It reminds me a bit of The Loneliness of the Long Distance Runner by Britisher Allan Sillitoe (Silly Toes I call him). This short story deals with a poor youngster who is serving time in prison school for petty theft. He is given the opportunity to enter a long distance race. If he wins then his jailers get credit for successfully "rehabilitating" a criminal. The protagonist becomes empowered as he starts running and makes a decision that will define the rest of his life. I won't ruin it for you in case you would like to read it. This is a story about dignity, inner strength and not giving in to peer pressure or false rewards. At least that is my interpretation. So, I see my present situation in a similar light. I feel like that long distance runner. There is a big amount of inner and outer pressure to succeed. But in the end I am the one person that defines success for myself. So far I am successful because I KNOW I am of value and will soon find my niche. All this unemployment and scarcity of resources shall pass. I also realize that this blog exists as a result of my need to reach out specially during my unemployment....and I met you all, followers and visitors. And got to know about your adventurous lives. What richness to feel connected to all of you from all around the world! I'm going to keep on running.

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

The Pink Ranch Welcomes The Pinkerton Twins

Radcliffe and Heathcliff Pinkerton are identical twins born conjoined at the tongue. After a 15 minute procedure involving an unknown topical anesthesia and a rather unfit doctor they were successfully separated at age 36. As a result of this most unfortunate surgery Radcliffe and Heathcliff only speak in tandem. Well it gets a little bit more complicated than this. While Radcliffe speaks his mind in the English language, Heathcliff speaks only in Spanish. This bilingual phenomenon was first noticed by a nurse that wishes to remain anonymous. It is a bit of a challenge to fully understand what they are saying, but I must state that they are very nice people with impeccable manners and a radiant disposition. I noticed this immediately when they filled their application forms (Why do you like pink so much?, Do you enjoy your latte with a touch of cinnamon or a twist of cardamon?...and the sort). Their credit is not that good but the Ranch accepts residents no matter of their credit history. Their application was accepted yesterday at 9:00 am. So a big Texan welcome to Radcliffe and Heathcliff Pinkerton!!!

Monday, March 2, 2009

Calling Poetry Forth

A Walk On The Beach, Joaquín Sorolla y Bastida (1863-1923)

This day calls for poetry. Poetry soothes our souls. I cannot stand the pessimistic mood I feel all around me. The economic mess is difficult to understand. Many people are suffering. Many more are apprehensive and afraid. My own unemployment has been the source of many frightening thoughts. I call forward the muses of poetry. I believe in the secret language of intimacy that we find in poetry. If treated with reverence poetry can reveal the innermost truth of ourselves. You can call it a kind of oracle if you like. We need our oracles. We need to talk with our ancient ones if only to make sense of this long arduous process called life. Poetry connects you with the sounds and music of our human heritage. If you cannot connect with your neighbors in this so isolated world or if your family and friends are far away, poetry will bring the warmth of their loving kindness. Mom and Dad are gone. They were my poetry because I loved them so much. I find solace in poetry. In poetry we find welcoming arms. A good poem is a sincere poem. Some are simple and other are full of tropes and highly inventive metaphors. That is just style. But the essence of the poem is to reach out to you, that you may never feel detached or lonely. A lifelong dedication to the garden of poetry will bring you the most exquisite flowers. Your life deserves flowers. Your life deserves song. Let's reconnect with the gift of poetry.


One of my most beloved poets is Antonio Machado (1875-1939). His poetry is delicate and deep. His music in verse is the glory of the Spanish language. His poems are the soul of 400 million speakers of the language of Cervantes. I am one of them. He speaks about life, the passing of time, Love and the beautiful landscape of Spain, the motherland. This is one of his most famous verse translated into English. Breathe this poetry. Your tired soul will find a resting place in these verses.

Cantares


All goes, and all remains,
but our task is to go,
to go creating roads,
roads through the sea.
My songs never chased after glory to remain in human memory.
I love the subtle worlds weightless and charming,
worlds like soap-bubbles.
I like to see them, daubed with sunlight and scarlet,
quiver, under a blue sky, suddenly and burst…I never chased glory.
Traveller, the road is only your footprint,
and no more;
traveller, there’s no road, the road is your travelling...'
Going becomes the road and if you look back you will see a path none can tread again.
Traveller, every track leaves its wake on the sea…
Once in this place where bushes now have thorns,
the sound of a poet’s cry was heard-‘Traveller there’s no road, the road is your travelling…’
Step by step, line by line…
The poet died far from home.
Shrouded by dust of a neighbouring land.
At his parting they heard him cry-‘Traveller there’s no road the road is your travelling…’
Step by step,
line by line…
When the goldfinch can’t sing,
when the poet’s a wanderer,
when nothing aids our prayer: ‘Traveller there’s no road the road is your travelling…’
Step by step,
line by line.