Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Querecotillo del Marcavelica

Pressing forward the sun rising to his flank the legless man gibbets and yaws. He tries to figure, tautologically, why red tinkers don’t get along with black tinkers, they’re dislike for one another going back some thousand years. Then, perhaps sooner, a beggar leapfrogs from behind a thicket, his cap jangling with coins and coppers. ‘…coppers, if you may, a pittance no more…’. Taken aback the legless man offers the beggar a nickel, the beggar scooping it up in a flurry of fingers and thumb. ‘…you’re kindness is great…’ says the beggar, ‘…and tall…’. Taken aback a second time the legless man turns, his eyes prickled with sun dots and milkweed silk. ‘…you’re most welcome…’ he says to the beggar squinting. The congregants stood two abreast waiting for the doors of the church to open, a man with a day’s worth of beard turning to his fellow congregants, and in a high sotto voco voice saying, ‘…cough it up…!’ ‘…up what…?’ asks one of the congregants. ‘…the whore’s glove you cads…’. ‘…Sullana Piura…’ says a woman sitting on a cross, ‘…Piura Sullana…’. ‘…off with her head…’ yells the man with the day’s worth of beard. ‘…Querecotillo del cual hablaremo Marcavelica…’ says the woman sitting on the cross, the skin around her eyes tightening. ‘…off with both her heads…’. As the clock strikes noontime the doors to the church open, the congregants file in two by two, from the worst sinners to the least, the woman sitting on the cross pushing her way to the front of the queue, the man with the day’s worth of beard yelling at the top of his lungs ‘…the glove, where’s the glove by God…?’

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"Poetry is the short-circuiting of meaning between words, the impetuous regeneration of primordial myth". Bruno Schulz

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