Monday night Leandro Feales left, for a little variation, accompanied by a security officer on a motorcycle who was talking on a cell phone and two patrol officers on the corner watching the farewell send off from all his friends. At the last moment, apparently on orders from the one on the motorcycle, the cops decided to intervene, asking for the ID card and papers of the driver of the car that would take him to the airport. I found out he was going at 7 pm, traumas of our youth (travel is the greatest desire of every Cuban, like daring to say one’s desire out loud, because as everyone knows then it won’t happen). Hurting a little bit with these spiritual scars that we all have to bear, they go way beyond not saying what one thinks because of fear, or not being able to live on one’s salary, but they commit an outrage against our subconscious and transform and deform our adult post-Revolution psyches, as Orlando Luis would say, I didn’t even get a goodbye kiss because among all of us who breakfasted on the news, we couldn’t all be in front at the last minute. The Lean found time to leave me his photos and I can make a gallery in my blog, and now I am going to write and organize the post, feeling again like I want to cry and feeling empty because there is one less here with me, and one more who passes to the other dimension, the real one. From here I wish him all the luck in the world and that one day we can be together like always, without the security forces, of course. (I will load the gallery as soon as I finish figuring out blogger.com)
This is an excerpt to a version of the song, Epitaph for Vladimir Visotski by Karsmarski Jacek (Polish dissident songwriter), which includes Ciro Diaz in his latest album, The Blue Slug, that I listened to compulsively for at least two months, especially on the street with my mp3 inherited from a friend who now has an I-pod. (Download the lyrics here) (Download the recording and album cover here) The song (in summary, which runs about ten minutes) is about a desperate artist going through the circles of hell in search of an answer or death, and at the end of his journey there is only loneliness and the weight of the supreme power above himself. So I found myself at times catching the bus across Havana at 12 noon in August under the perennial sunshine and with the distressing feeling of not going anywhere, or arriving too late, or going for pleasure ... I feel that I have already arrived at the eighth enclosure (this is the finale of the song) where there is nothing, and I feel useless and empty, and I look at people without faith who walk along the street and who have so much fear that they no longer know they're afraid, and who have seen so many Roundtables and so many news broadcasts that they no longer know what belongs to reality or just to the TV screen. They cannot discern that they no longer believe, but cannot disbelieve either, and just move along past me not going anywhere.