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Brick Boxes

This week a neighbor tried to suicide.
I came home late at night, we were joking and calmly laughing with my girlfriend when I noticed some policemen in front of my building; I asked the doorman if something had happened.
- A neighbor tried to suicide – he said, – ¿Remember Jaime, the long hair guy that lives in the 19th floor?, he shot himself around three – the doorman was perfectly clear but my head didn’t processed the information fully, I guess it´s not easy to adjust from jokes to suicides in less than a minute. Maybe he noticed my confusion and continued the relation (surely told many times that day) – he shot himself in the mouth, and the bullet came out here ( he turned his head, showed the trajectory with his finger, marked a point in the left cheekbone en then made a gesture closing his fingers and opening them swiftly), he´s better now, in the hospital, his parents had to come from Pamplona…
We talked around five minutes, he asked if I knew the guy, how was he talking abut, I said yes. I think I know, a man in he´s early twenties, tall, pale, long black hair, thin mustache and goatie, a really timid smile. I saw him walking around the neighborhood, just many times, we shared a taste for walks in the night, when the sounds are dim, the lights hit the asphalt with a wet golden glow, the night flowers shower their perfume and the city is yours. 8:00, 10:00 12:00 pm, three, four of the morning, all are perfect ours for a walk. we saw each other many times in the night, but we never said hi, not even shared a nod, yet, he always smiled, that shy, childish smile.
The last time I think I saw him he was talking to one of the doormen of the building late some night, I have seen some other neighbors doing that, not just the polite chatter when you’re passing by, but an actual visit at the lobby of the building, the kind you pay to some family member or to a friend you haven’t seen in a long time,an almost intimate kind of meeting, warm and awkward. the other neighbors I´ve seen doing this are at least 65, but this guy was barrly 25, and you could tell he was happy to have someone to talk to.
Every time I saw him I knew that we could talked, sometimes you just know those things, but I also saw some things that kept me from saying hi, a certain kind of fragility, some unrooted idealism that denies reality, a deep sadness revolting just beneath the smile, he reminded me too much of a dear friend that has hurt me and disappointed me greatly in the past, (A friend that after months of silence has just called me when I was writing this paragraph).
I always knew he was alone, too alone.
I don´t know if he´s coming back to the building or to his home town, If we ever met again, and I see a scar in his face and some shame in his eyes, I´m afraid I could not say hi.
We all live in our little brick boxes, sometimes we share them with others, and love, tire, laugh and fight, sometimes we live in them alone, and if we are lucky the bullet will come trough our cheek like a hand that opens suddenly.

Agní y Vayu, cabalgando en mis doshas, tejiendo un mirar en su espiral.

I step back, knowing to well the meaning of that crunch beneath my foot. Every time, every single time a chill curls up my spine with razor nails and tears run on my face; I think I´d die if I wouldn’t be able to cry. Once again I move mi foot back to see the shattered face of a girl crushed under my boot, her tissues so dry, hers bones so thin that she´s almost one with the arid soil that extends as far as I can see.

I keep counting, I always do, and I always will, until the sun claims my body too. I have found sixty five thousand two hundred and eighty two dead kids since I left the city; All dry, crumbling, thin and fragile, all taken by the heat. I don’t count the adults, but when I find a child I do, I count, I write and I cry.

Sixty five thousand two hundred and eighty two.

It’s not writing too much, when you are so painfully alone you have to do something to cling to sanity, or at least an illusion of sanity that allows you to move one, to clutch to live and not surrender to the heat and the dust. Not yet, not just yet.

I wish that I knew more languages, but there´s no one to learn from anymore, so this one just have to be enough. Every time I found a child I write in my notebook, and I write in the nearest perdurable thing I can find, I´m just trying to prevent this from being forgotten, that If anyone survives or comes to this land can know for sure that we killed our home.

Well, I´m being overdramatic, it’s hard not to, we didn’t killed the earth , she still moves around the unforgiving sun and live endures stubborn and strong; there are frogs, lizards, rodents, even fish living underground, some can live years in a motionless slumber until they surface and mate. There are beautiful plants, strong, harsh and dry; there are some birds, and countless insects to feed them. No we didn’t ended life, we just killed humanity.

So I write, every single time I find a child drying to oblivion I write, so there’s a chance that if humans survive we don’t repeat the same mistakes, the same crimes.

We cut down the forests, almost all of them, thinking that a few thousand square miles in each continent will be enough; we polluted the air, our vehicles vomited fumes that poisoned the air and keep it to protect the live beneath it as it always had, the air used to protect us from the sun, now that’s hard to believe, now its etheric fire. We corrupted the waters, shat and pissed and throw unspeakable substances to it, until there was no more water to drink.

All for money, power and money, now it’s hard to explain what money was, just a idea, something that we used to change for other things, the more you had the more things you could get, people treated you better, but when the water ended. The huge reservoirs of water that the money of the powerful bought ended one day. In one way or another they let everybody else die, forgetting that their power was just other people doing things for them, and that all the me that has ever been can relieve a parched throat when there’s no water left, and no one to get it for you.

No, they didn’t killed humanity, we all did, always saying yes and not doing anything , remaining silent, remaining still.

Sixty five thousand two hundred and eighty two. I have written in whale bones, deer bones, dog bones, human bones. I have written in rocks, petrified trees, shells, walls, sculptures, cars, ships planes, anything I think can endure some years. I have written Sixty five thousand two hundred and eighty two times, every time I found the body of a dead child.

It´s been eight months since I left the city, and I have found only four people alive, three of them are dead, one sailed from the harbor looking for a settlement in the coast line, she thought that if there were more than ten people together they would be along the coast line. Pietro, the last one I founded, dyed of dehydration in my arms, we walked together for a month, we wrote in bones, in trees and in the sand. He told me that some people is living beneath the mountains at the south, the far south, that there´s some water in those caves. I´m going there, I don’t know if what he told me is true, I´m not even sure if I care, but I got a destination and I´m alive; you can follow the map bellow this words if you want.

If you read this don’t keep this story for you, let them know, let them all know, that a single person founded without looking Sixty five thousand two hundred and eighty two dead children walking only eight months; that humanity almost destroyed this planet, that we let the rivers dry and chopped the trees down, let them all know, and if in a hundred a thousand or a million years humans flourish again, keep this story alive. If we survive this, we can’t let this happen again.

Sixty five thousand two hundred and eighty two.
Little one

This post is a part of the Blog action day 2009, a global initiative to create awarness about climate change, for more information and thousands of related posts visit www.blogactionday.org. Lets Blog, post, communicate, help. We can make a difference.

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