Literary friendships and enmities.
Pablo Neruda.


Not only of stars...

Not only of stars...
May be in these lands nobody has been lucky to unleash so many envies towards my literary personality. There are people who live live on this profession, on envying me, off rare publicity, through twisted brochures or tenacious and pictoresques magazines. I've lost in my trips this odd collection. The little pamphlets have been left in distant rooms, in other atmospheres. In Chile I fill again my suitcase with this endemic and phosphorescent leprosy, I discard again my incorrect adjectives that want to kill me. Elsewhere these things don't happen to me. And nevertheless, I return. It's because I blindly love my land and all this green and bitter flavour of its sky and its mud. And I like more the love that touches me here, and this mystical and eccentric hatred that surrounds me puts a fertile ann necessary shit in my property. Not only of stars lives man.

Spain, when I trod on its soil, gave me all the hands of its poets, of his loyal poets, and with them I shared the bread and the wine, within the categorical friendship of my life center. I've got the living memory of those first hours or years in Spain, and many times I miss my comrades love.

Vicente Alexandre.

In an neighborhood full of flowers, between Cuatro Caminos and the new Ciudad Universitaria, in the Wellingtonia Street, lives Vicente Alexandre.

He's big, blond and pinky. He's sick since years ago. He never gets out. He lives almost motionless.

His deep and marvelous poestry is the revelation of a world dominated by misterious forces. He is Spain's most secret poet, his verses submerged splendour approaches him may be to our Rosamel del Valle.

He waits for me every week, in a certain day, that for him, within his loneliness, is a party. We just talk about poetry. Alexandre can not go to the cinema. He doesn't know a bit on politics.

Of all my friends I searate him, by his infinitely pure quality friendship. In his isolated-enclosure house, poetry and life acquire a sacred transparency.

I carry him Madrid's life, the old poets I discover in Atocha's endless bookshops, my trips through the markets where I extract immense celery branches or manchego cheese drawings spread in levantino oil. He turns on with my long walkings, in which he can't go with me, through Cava Baja Street, a narrow and fresh street of coopers and rope dealers, all golden by the wood and the cord.

Or we read for a long time Pedro de Espinosa, Soto de Rojas, Villamediana. We were searching in them the magical and material elements that make Spanish poetry, ino a medeival age, a persistent and vital clarity and mysterious flowing.

Miguel Hernández.

I don't know where is Miguel Hernández. Now priests and the civil guard "fix" culture in Spain. Eugenio Montes and Pemán are relevant figures and they look great together with the outlaw Millán Astray, who rules the literary societies in Spain. Meanwhile, Miguel Hernández, the great and young peasant poet, is executed and buried, in the jail or roaming through the mountains.

I had read before Miguel arrived to Madrid his sacramental plays, of an incredible word constrution. Miguel wasin Orihuela sheepherd and the priest lent him catholic books, that he read once and again and powerfully assimilated.

Thus the greatest of the new political poetry builders, is the greatest spanish catholicsm new poet. In his second visit to Madrid, he tried to return when, in my house, I convinved him to stay. He stayed then, very village in Madrid, very stranger, with his potatoe face and shining eyes.

My great friend, Miguel, how I love you and how I respect and love your young and strong poetry. Where you are in this moment, in the jail, in the roads, in the death, it's just the same: neither jailers, nor civil guards, nor killers could be able to erase your already listended voice, your voice that was your people's voice.

Rafael Alberti.

I met Rafael Alberti before I arrived to Spain. I received in Ceylon his first letter, more than ten years ago. He wanted to edit my book Residencia en la tierra, it led him from one trip to another from Moscow to Liguria, and specially, it carried it through Madrid. From Rafael's original, Gerardo Diego made three copies. Rafael was untireless. All the Madrid poets listened my verses, read by him, in his balcony of Urquijo Street.

Everybody, Bergamín, Serrano, Plaja, Petere, as many others, met me before I arrived. I had, due to Rafael Alberti, inseparable friends, before I met them.

Later, with Rafael we've been only brothers. Life has intricated a lot our lives, revolving our poetry and our fate.

This contemporary young Spanish literature master, this irreproachable poetry and politics revolutionary should come to Chile, bring to our land his force, his hapiness and generosity. He should come so we can sing. There is a lot to sing in this place. With Rafael and Roces we would make fantastic chorus. Alberti sings better than anybody else the "tamborileiro", the Paso del Ebro, and other hapiness and war songs.

Rafael Alberti is the most passionated poetry's poet that I've met. As Paul Éluard, he doesn't separate from it. He's able to remember and say Góngora's Primera Soledad and besides long Garcilaso's and Rubén Darío and Apollinaire and Maiakovski fragments.

May be Rafael Alberti writes, among other things, his life pages that we luckily have joined. In it wil be seen, as in everything he does, his great brother heartf and his spirit so Spanish in jerarchy, fairs and centrals inside his diamantine and absolute construction expression, a classical one.

Dedication: to Arturo Serrano Plaja and Vicente Salas Viu.

You are the only friends of my literary life in Spain who have arrived to my fatherland. I might have liked to bring them all, and I have not given up. I will try to bring them, from Mexico, from Buenos Aires, from Santo Domingo, from Spain.

Not only war has united us, but poetry. I had brought you to Madrid my American warm heart and a poems branch that you have kept with you.

You, how many! everybody, you have clarified, so much my thought, you have given me so singular and so transparent friendship. I have helped many of you in hidden problems, before, during and after the war.

You have helped me more.

You have shown me a happy and cared friendship, and your intellectual dignity surprised me at the beginning: I arrived from my country's crude envy, from the torment. Since you welcomed me as yours, you gave such confidence to my raison d'être, and to my poetry, that I could pass easy to fight into the the people's ranks. Your friendship and your nobility helped me more than the treaties. And up until now, this simple road that I discover, is the only one for all the intellectual. May the envious, the spiteful, the poisoned, the malicious, the megalomaniacs do not fight with the people .

Those, to the other side.

With us, Spanish friends and brothers, only the pure, the brotherly, the honest, ours.


Most recent revision: May 18, 2002