martes, 1 de octubre de 2013


Life is just death postponed
Arthur Schopenhauer - The World as Will and Representation
As with all those things that gradually happen to us, it was difficult to get a perspective, even for me. I´d been coarsened by the burdens of History. For starters, dogs avoided me; worse, they showed me their teeth. And when one afternoon I took two of my surrogate nephews to the Zoo, the animals literally went crazy, raised their snouts and hid, scared. Let me give you another example. I was never a good dancer. But sometimes, when loneliness overcomes me, I go the milongas. I am not charming, not at all, but I possess enough existential resources to sweet some ears and get the vague company of a one-night stand. Except that suddenly, nobody wanted to dance with me anymore and refused to be near me. Finally, I was invited to leave. I thought at first I suffered from some type of allergy to deodorants or something like that. My physician examined me, curious; like all of his predecessors, he has always boasted of having a patient who doesn´t get sick, ever and is not affected at all by the passing of time. The tests and screenings did not reveal a disease however, something was quite wrong. The awful stench started to grow. At first, it smelled like dead flowers or old cheese; later on and particularly now, like graveyard perfume. The usual suspects were a hormonal disorder, an invisible bacteria and magnesium or zinc deficiencies. Finally, when all of the physical causes were exhausted they invoked a nebulous emotional stress. Prescriptions and liniments are useless; I stink like a coffin busted by the industrious vapors of death. Oh, Death, my elusive partner since I was wounded at the Battle of Milvian Bridge where most of Maxentius´ legions were slaughtered. After combat and with a gladius in the chest I got up and felt myself connected with the very notion of “Being” and the bright sensation of belonging to the whole. Ever since, my body has become incorruptible. And it has remained so throughout many boring centuries; until now, when a shaman approached me with some ridiculous albeit appropriate clairvoyance: my soul can no longer be imprisoned in an imperishable container. Strangely enough, “That” which has been preached as the “One, eternal and unchangeable” appears to be losing its cohesion, and with an unpleasant smell to boot. In panic and also in hope, I await an astonishing end to my existence.
© Pablo Martinez Burkett, 2013

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