Testament of a Figurehead
Orlando Luis Pardo Lazo
Standing, naked, with eyes burned by the tears and the Cuban nights passed without blinking a damn eye. Or blinking, but jumping from nightmare to nightmare, possessed by a Havana without Castro or Marx.
Standing, decrepit, with bony phalanges, and a barbaric beard. With an ache and a void in the soul of three sets of balls. With my cock brushing the keyboard of my mercenary laptop, mercenárida, exquisite corpse that announces briefly the whole of my corpse.
And so I write this. And so I want to be remembered. And so I was a thousand nine hundred and fifty times more free than you.
When I was a child of the seventies I hated my happy childhood. I always knew more than the adults around me, who were poor and fearful but with enormous hearts. I thought that when I grew up, the eighties would find me out of that house forever. I would be free of the drowsy uniformity of this country, and of the good sun that turned my poor neighborhood into a local paradise.
I thought that Cuba would not resist the date changes. That Havana would be filled with colors and unrecognizable people before the year 2000. That was the future life. I was wrong.
All the parents and neighbors died, and all the ministers, and even the premier himself rotted inside and out while still alive, without the decency of a farewell or even an apology. They left us alone in the zoo, among beasts in uniforms of an olive-green color, green like a lie, green like silence, the green of the universal death of our nation. The future was today: futile, fossil, funeral.
It died, of course, any stupid attempt to find among so much shit the infinitesimal and infinite miracle of love.
Our hearts grew old, our bodies trapped in a childhood of penance for being such hypocrites, but not enough to smile over.
We gave in. We didn’t find our neighbor We don’t have a single motherfucking contemporary Cuban. We are extinct. Our hands only serve to wiggle our fingers in panic, telling our own biography: No, no, no…
We deserve an Absolute Revolution in perpetuity. We are the Absolute Revolution in perpetuity. Hallelujah, human time has stopped and we unknowingly lived in a state of grace.
I look at my books. There are thousands and thousands. I’m going to trade them to the old man who sells hookers on the corner. Except for two or a dozen, I’m still not sure. They are books that cause instability, illusions of movement, desires in mutation. They are treacherous books, like one of those most musical themes of three sad decades ago.
I look at the internet censored for Cubans in Cuba. It has been an imbecility to partake of the forbidden. The moral attitude was disgusting. Disgusting having to pirate what belongs to me by my own right. Disgusting to have entertained everyone, with a vaudevillian theater that breathed hope to the patients of a totalitarianism without a terminal phase. They should not believe me. not a single syllable of saliva. Disgusting to survive death successfully in the desert, rather than focus on the source of my insatiable thirst. Disgusting to have been so traitorous and not knowing to dwell in posthumous peace my failure. Disgusting of not having met you before, love.
And still I type standing naked, my stomach making me crick-crack like a psycho-rigid insect. They don’t invent with me. They don’t project now. Nobody is going to die. That is our gloomy phobia. Getting to an end without end.
I will not move a finger. Traveling is embarrassing if you are Cuban. To be free, inside or outside, is infamous if you’re Cuban. Individual creativity is a stigma while reality coagulates around us.
The circle of murderers approaches, shark without a country, from the absolute power of an unknown and ubiquitous government. Name three ministers if you have balls. Go ahead, name them, and you will see that you do not know who they are. Are pseudonyms, pseudopods. Name three thousand dead people and see if you remember their false features. You do not know dick, bro. You are exceptionally ignorant. Your tongue chirps like the insects of my stomach emptied of hunger and meaning. And just for that I still love you, in spite of myself.
Cuba has finally become pure action.
Things happen, but now nothing takes place.
Do you see? Do yo not see?
Translated by BC CASA
November 3 2012