On China and other niceties
Category

Poetry

distance

Distance

By | China, Poetry

Zhou Dunyi & the lotus flower

 

The other day I showed my colleague Jaime Pascual, who claims to dislike poetry, a bad poem of mine (see below), called Distance, which vaguely (distantly) echoes the comments of eleventh century Chinese philosopher Zhou Dunyi (周敦頤) about Tao Yuanming’s (陶渊明) love of lotus flowers, writing seven hundred years earlier: “The lotus flower can be only appreciated from a distance, touching one is blasphemy” (可远观而不可亵玩焉)…The lotus flower emerges from the mud unsoiled (出淤泥而不染).

Perhaps we too should learn to keep our distance as we go about our daily lives, the better to remain unsoiled, like lotus flowers, oblivious to the mud around us. Jaime said he liked the idea of my poem and I was glad he had grasped it through poetry. I am convinced that poetry alone can express things in such a way as to make us believe there is still a chance of emerging from the mud unsoiled!

 

tao yuanming

The Poet Tao Yuanming (陶渊明)

 

DISTANCE (1)

You wander through space.

Distance annoys. Distance intrigues.

You leave one place to get to another.

And when you get there…

It’s clear you don’t like what you find.

It could have been different.

In any event, where there’s distance you want to reduce distance.

Distance is stronger than taste.

You only want to conquer distance.

That’s why you travel from origin to destination.

Distance annoys, distance intrigues.

You only want to conquer distance.

 

 

dibugrafia distancia


(1).

This poem was not included in my book Dibugrafías

Revolver verses

By | Poetry | No Comments

I’ve been invited to take part in Versos al paso, set up by Madrid City Hall and urban artists Boa mistura. This literary initiative presents pedestrians with fragments of poetry at some 1,100 zebra crossings throughout the Spanish capital’s 21 districts. Below, photos of the two verses I contributed. 

¡No hay quien dé con su destino!!! (not a literal translation, but something like: There’s no chance of meeting our destiny!!!),
(at the crossing by 85 Bravo Murillo Street, not far from IE Business School, where I work.)

“Hasta la nada tiene algo” (Even nothingness has something),
(where the Paseo de los Ferroviarios meets Nuno Gómez street, in the Villaverde district.)

And here’s a photo of the lines written by Loreto Sesma, a young writer I discovered, so to speak, on 13 Mateo Inurria street. I would recommend her book, Amor revolver, which she describes as a “collection of poems with six bullets. Like Russian roulette, the reader plays with the six bullets until, inevitably, one enters him or her.” The bullets, needless to say, are Loreto’s words:

“Keep the Kiss, burn the verse, shrug off the burden and fly.”

Two of my proposals for Versos al Paso were chosen: He’s the third:

Dónde estás, Amor?  (Where are you, Love?)

For me, love is either a revolver, which kills you, like Loreto Sesma says, or there’s no chance of ever finding it, like our destiny!

 

Este sitio web utiliza cookies para que usted tenga la mejor experiencia de usuario. Si continúa navegando está dando su consentimiento para la aceptación de las mencionadas cookies y la aceptación de nuestra política de cookies, pinche el enlace para mayor información.

ACEPTAR
Aviso de cookies