24 junio 2006

Geranios y tulipanes and other stories of real life magical realism

no thoughts today... just words:

I am alive, I am happy, I am well fed, I am "en victoria, aleluja..."

I am nineteen.

One year away from "ya no adolescente... PURA adulta." amen.

I have good news and I have bad news.
The good news is that i have lots of lovely pictures taken in stunning lighting. (I love peru via digital cameras. copious amounts of gratitude for the generousity of Hermano Steven Holmes. gracias gracias, a million times gracias. my girls (vain little things) send their "gracias"es as well.)

The bad news is that they´re coming out really dark on the compu and i fear they can´t be seen.

carambas, i must "thought."

thought one: of magical realism
there´s this trend/style thingee in postmodern literature, namely that of the latin american variety, called "magical realism." basically, the author mixes realistic fiction (or autobiography) with way far out supernatural stuff or jumps in time and place. weird. it´s an interesting idea, but from the little i´ve read, the "latin american" authorship usually secures that the actual content is way too vulgar for my little monja soul.

so that was almost irrelevent. the relevant part is this:

now i understand why latin american writers right that stuff. (the magical realism part, not the vulgarity.) it´s cause they blinkin´live it! seriously. there is the oddest mix of reality and super-reality here that´s just... interesting.

so i could say, "superstition," or i could say "ignorance" or whatever, but the fact is that for them, there are NON natural happenings in real life, and they have to try to put that into words.

example: "Such-and-such a sister was walking along, the only one converted in her family, alone in the cold, feeling like maybe she shouldn´t be going to preach that night. She heard steps behind her, and when she turned to look, she saw a joven (young man) about 23 years of age.

´Buenas noches´ she says... ´Buenas noches,´ he replies. ´Where are you going?´

´Ah... up a ways to preach in La Punta.´ she says.

´Good... it´s good that you are going to share the Word with the Church. Don´t be discouraged, keep on preaching what is true... God sees your work, it is not in vain.´

She looks back at him in surprise, but no one is there."

example two:

"One day, Hermana So-and-so came into church during prayer, bringing a cup of water for the pastor or something. Everyone else was praying, but she looks and sees this white haze around the pastor´s head as he prayed up front.

´Queeee?´ (Whaaaat?) she thinks

She steps back outside to see if there´s a fire or something. The night is clear and dark; there is no fog.

She looks back inside, rubbing her eyes. Still the cloud remains. She takes the water to the front, then takes her seat and begins to pray. When she opens her eyes, the cloud is gone."

So here I am, American as all get out, being related these events over breakfast or lunch or coffee. I usually say "mmmmm?" and am postmodern enough (!poder!) to suspend all judgment. What do i know? I wasn´t there. They were. They have their reasons to make such claims. They are not crazy. They have no reason to lie.

example three:
"One day, my father was sleeping and he heard Cristal, the dog that never barks, barking with all his strength. He ran outside and there was nothing.

´Someone´s going to die,´ my mother said.

The next day, Tio Raul down the road drank IncaKola after working in the field all morning and his heart exploded. My mother says that it was his soul walking around that woke up Cristal the night before.

Sister, do you believe people´s souls walk around before they die?" Calín asks me, with serious big brown eyes in a serious little brown face.

"Well Calin, I´ve never seen them..."