Saturday, April 18, 2009

Poem: Virgilio Piñera

Virgilio Piñera(finally posted)
And now, having mentioned or invoked him and his work via his peers or poets of successive generations who write under his star, I present Virgilio Piñera (1912-1979), poet, playwright of the highest acclaim, and equally acclaimed author of several novels, including René's Flesh (La carne de René), he spent his last decades esteemed by some fellow writers, especially younger ones, and some critics, and a persona non grata to the government. Earlier he had been a member of the circle around the literary journal Orígenes, which also included Lezama Lima, and, during his stay in Argentina, had befriended and translated the work of Witold Gombrowicz, which also influenced several subsequent generations. Piñera's outspokenness on social and sexual issues was ahead of its time, as was his art, but no one with a distinctive vision can worry about that: as he himself writes below: "So I was, so I lived / so I dreamed." Indeed.


Como he sido iconoclasta

me niego a que me hagan estatua:

si en la vida he sido carne,

en la muerte no quiero ser mármol.

Como yo soy de un lugar

de demonios y de ángeles,

en ángel y demonio muerto

seguiré por esas calles…

En tal eternidad veré

nuevos demonios y ángeles,

con ellos conversaré

en un lenguaje cifrado.

Y todos entenderán

el yo no lloro, mi hermano….

Así fui, así viví,

así soñé. Pasé el trance.

Copyright © 2008, the estate of Virgilio Piñera. All rights reserved.

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