In his poem, “So That You Will Hear Me,” Pablo Neruda evokes the frustration of using language that resists translation. His words, which have been tailored in relation to himself, cannot illustrate his mind as he sees and feels it. But they will try anyway: “And I watch my words from a long way off.before you they peopled the solitude that you occupy, and they are more used to my sadness than you are.”When Haruki Murakami writes that “One beautiful April morning, on a narrow side street in Tokyo’s fashionable Harajuku neighborhood, I walk past the 100% girl” no matter who you are, you can’t help imagining that you are that girl, or that you have noticed her
So it seems obvious that I would turn to Gabriel Garcia Marquez, whose Love in the Time of Cholera has immortalized the universal idea of unrequited love. His opening lines, “It was inevitable: the scent of bitter almonds always reminded him of the fate of unrequited love,”
Did you throw away the book when Fermina Daza with a mere wave of her arm ends all her enchantment with Florentino Ariza? If you did, then this is for you. Alexis Almeida screams out her love affair with literature for the less cynical side of ours, the believers.Enchanting piece like the books she quote.
So herein I profess my strange and bizarre love affair with literature. Literature is my lover: offering me so many things in her own terms but refusing to be tied down, giving herself to everyone, but not all of herself, perhaps just enough, on her better days. She doesn’t commit to anyone, but she gives people what they want; they start out thinking they want her and then they realize they need her, they use her to serve their own needs but she will never admit to serving them. Her soul serves only herself, but in this world, we could never be resigned to believing that. In this world where we need conduits and catalysts, we tailor her face to our own desires and ideals, to inspire us. And she lets us, because she knows who she is, underneath all of the beautiful, cryptic language that adorns her life.
Have you read Parveen Shakir? I’m just kidding, you dont have to 🙂