Tuesday, April 05, 2011


Samuel Johnson is Indignant (2001) es el único libro de Lydia Davis que he leído a la fecha. También había leído algunos cuentos sueltos, como "Mr. Burdoff's Visit to Germany", creo que en una Granta, texto que, como los que componen Samuel Johnson... y otros volúmenes de cuentos (Break it Down de 1986, Almost No Memory de 1997 o Varieties of Disturbance de 2007) se incluyen en este libro. No así The Cows, que apareció este año (más sobre esto, acá, en el blog de Luis Panini, uno de los grandes entusiastas de Davis).
El libro me lo regaló, amablamente, Mauricio Salvador. Ahora que terminaba de comer leía "Break it Down", el cuento que le da título a Break it Down. Dos fragmentos:

There weren't any bad times with her, though maybe there was one bad time, when I told her I loved her. I couldn't help it, this was the first time this had happened with her, now I was half falling in love with her or maybe completely if she had let me but she couldn't or I couldn't completely because it was all going to be so short and other things too, and so I told her, and didn't know of any way to tell her first that she didn't have to feel this was a burden, the fact that I loved her, or that she didn't have to feel the same about me, or say the same back, that it was just that I had to tell her, that's all, because it was bursting inside me, and saying it would begin to take care of what I was feeling, really I couldn't say anything of what I was feeling because there was so much, words couldn't handle it, and making love only made it worse because then I wanted words badly but they were no good, no good at all, but I told her anyway, I was lying on top of her and her hands were up by her head and my hands were on hers and our fingers were locked and there was a little light on her face from the window but I couldn't really see her and I was afraid to say it but I had to say it because I wanted her to know, it was the last night, I had to tell her then or I'd never had another chance, I just said, Before you go to sleep, I have to tell you before you go to sleep that I love you, and immediately, right away after, she said, I love you too, and it sounded to me as if she didn't mean it, a little flat, but then it usually sounds a little flat when someone says, I love you too, because they're just saying it back even if they do mean it, and the problem is that I'll never know if she meant it, or maybe someday she'll tell me whether she meant it or not, but there's no way to know, and I'm sorry I did that, it was a trap I didn't mean to put her in, I can see it was a trap, because if she hadn't said anything at all I know that would have hurt too, as though she were taking something from me just accepting it and not giving anything back, so she really had to, even just to be kind to me, she had to say it, and I don't really know now if she meant it.


I guess you get to a point where you look at that pain as if it were there in front of you three feet away lying in a box, an open box, in a window somewhere. It's hard and cold, like a bar of metal. You just looke at it there and say, All right, I'll take it, I'll buy it. That's what it is. Because you know all about it before you even go into this thing. You know the pain is part of the whole thing. And it isn't that you can say afterwards the pleasure was greater than the pain and that's why you would do it again. That has nothing to do with it. You can't measure it, because the pain comes after and it lasts longer. So the question really is, Why doesn't the pain make you say, I won't do it again? When the pain is so bad that you have to say that, but you don't.


Quizá también interese esto y supongo que esto.

También me regalaron la primera temporada de Bored to Death (M); Trenes rigurosamente vigilados de Bohumil Hrabal (B) y un libro sobre Steven Spielberg, en la serie Maestros del Cine de Cahiers du Cinema (A., que ya leí), pues cumplí 29 años.

1 comment:

Luis Panini said...


Davis es, después de Oates, la mejor escritora estadounidense.

La serie Bored to Death es ridiculamente buena. Disfruta.