Friday, May 29, 2009
29 May 2009. Slight movement of the leaves. Black truck passing. Girl in blue...
And scenes that fail--or is it only in their beginnings? Jana Purita--singing on a rooftop somewhere in Buenos Aires, with Fierro Chifle and two others. Or perhaps it should be Rosita Quiroga, then a girl from La Boca, seated now, leaning forward over her guitar, impossibly long eyelashes-- "Pero ché, me estás bromeando, soy más vieja que la biblia...." Certain and sardonic--like the stridently Italiante phrase endings--an upward lilt putting a point on each gesture. Provisional, everlasting...
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Thursday, May 28, 2009
28 May 2009. Satin gray clouds. Figure reaching into back seat of bluish-gray Mercedes, emerges holding white plastic bag. Life of the 7-eleven. A 300E. Stack of small mass-produced wine barrels, plastic spigots and printed wood trim. Imitations of imitations...
A civilization of numbers--that's what she taught me. La Plata, 1961, lesson's in castellano with Gustavo's aunt--the sister of Lea. Description of oceanliner, passengered by Americans. Every act a number...
Or puro campo. Omar Moreno Palacios, togther with Julia Josefa Palacios Moreno, el 9 de julio de 1971...
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Wednesday, May 27, 2009
27 May 2009. Cool and sunny, here in Berkeley. All those k's and hard b's...
Cuti y Roberto Carabajal cantando una zamba de Carlos Carabajal... La de Olvido.
Difícil será poder olvidar
Tus ojos que tanto amé
Y mientras la noche se vá
Solo sé que ya nunca más ha de volver
Dichoso de aquel que pueda besar
Tu boca llena de amor
Jardín que me diera la flor
Y por el frío de olvido marchitó...
Tus ojos de luna son
Miel en tus labios hay
agüita que corre y se va, ya se va
Y tal vez ya nunca he de alcanzar...
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Tuesday, May 26, 2009
26 May 2009. Sunny, with a touch of warm.
Un gatito--as danced on a midnight-blue stage by Santiago Ayala, El Chúcaro--"el bailarín de la noche"... Fragments of the ideal, partial knowledge, all the way--given focus and reconstruction...
"...así también después de su desaparición (de los indios argentinos) los que han prevalecido siguen, de un modo involuntario, perpetuándolos en el idioma mismo que hablan, no únicamente a causa de la toponimia o de ciertas incorporaciones léxicas, sino también de gestos, de imágenes y de interjecciones intransferibles y vivaces..." (Juan José Saer, El río sin orillas)
("...and so it was that after their disappearance (of the Argentine Indians), those who have prevailed continue, in an involuntary way, to perpetuate them in the very language they speak, not only on account of place names or certain lexical incorporations, but also in their gestures, their images and their interjections at once indelible and alive...") (Juan José Saer, The Boundless River)
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Friday, May 22, 2009
22 May 2009. Even grays.
Lee with small knit hat, perched on edge of recyling bin, eyes alert. Three strangers, waiting for the G. One with watch cap and all-black clothes, hunched, head shifting from side to side, looking up momentarly. Another, her glasses, resolute, electronic device unseen. Then, the sidekick--lip earing, punched out goattee, t-shirt reading "Obey." Jams his bike up onto back wheel, a gesture of authority--within this tiny framework of defiance...
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Thursday, May 21, 2009
21 May 2009. Gray, almost with some sun. Paciencia...
Wagon on long road, tilted back on two truck wheels, single driver, Santiago del Estero. Coya. Early morning, from the shadows--or that's how it feels. Layer of trees in the distance, merged in the haze.
Unintentional autobiographies. Wheat, barley, rye, spelt and oats...
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Wednesday, May 20, 2009
20 May 2009. Morning sun, crossing Solano on the diagonal, chilly wind...Dylan song...
Carlos Castellanos, a man of courtesy, from Guatemala, working patiently on the corner PC. Where moments before, the image of two dancers, in traditional dress, together in what appears to be an Argentine schoolroom, silhouetted by the white board/black board just behind, dark linoleum floor, and to the side, a pair of girls at long study table, each with her head propped on one arm, watching in mild interest... Impossible, to recreate the past...
Somewhere in Santa Fe.
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Monday, May 18, 2009
18 May 2009. Cooler and gray, an even light.
The good doctor, quoting Daniel Boone, had he ever been lost in the woods? "No, no, I was never lost...but I was once bewildered for three or four days..."
Bewildered, condition of wilderness, as in Amaicha of old...Valle del Tafí. Historias Andantes, and the travelers themselves--Chugo, Héctor Roberto Chavero, Axel y Roslie...
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Friday, May 15, 2009
15 May 2009. Peaceful gray morning, touches of blue just under far edges of the clouds...
Early swimmers, butterfly and crawl, Emery on the high stand, as ever. Ripples of light on pool-green water. Vigorous figures just below.
Highland peoples. La Puna--in the range of 14,000 feet... Valleys of the Calchaquí...
"Entonces, ahí está el asunto: ¿como devolver el canto a la selva? ¿cómo hacer para que vuelva el ¡ay! de la paloma?, el zorzal que huyó, el pechito colorado que no volverá nunca aterrorizado por el ¡Tac! de cada hachazo. Buena preocupación para nosotros músicos que se dicen compositores y tocan lindo el piano, el violín, el charango y la quena. No trabajando en la ciudad para llegar al disco; cantando al campesino, haciendo música con sabor del lugar; quién sabe si esa no es una manera simbólica de pedir perdón a la selva y devolverle un pedazo de su canto..." (Atahualpa Yupanqui)
* * *
"Then here we have the matter: how to return song to the open country? how to regain the "ay" of the dove, the thrush that has fled, the red breast that will never come back, terrorized by the "chok" of the axe blow. A worthwhile preoccupation for our musicians, who are spoken of as composers and who play beautifully the piano, the violin, the charango the quena flute. Not by working in the city to arrive at a recording, but by singing to the country people, making music with the flavor of place; who knows if this might not be a symbolic way of asking pardon of the open land, of giving back to it a fragment of its own song..." (Atahualpa Yupanqui)
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Thursday, May 14, 2009
13 May 2009. Early crows, sometime around dawn...
First memories, always in question. A glass partition facing the bay, California Street, overlooking Convair plant, or the red-brick kelp works--was it that? Cervezería...
Addictions to the present as well. Carlos Santana in the Argentine grade schooler's essay on Don Atahaulpa Yupanqui, where knowledge is power. The Coyas--or Kollas--or Qolla... "Desde la Puna Qolla de Abra Pampa..." A territory called Argentina...
Names and picturings. Florencio Molina Campos, his goofy gauchos--by me that is. But hidden within, something true, perhaps? A resonance...
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Wednesday, May 13, 2009
13 May 2009. Mild, some sun, somewhat warm...
The challenges of indecision. Especially when guided by the need for conclusiveness. As opposed to simply indecision.
A small round wooden platform, worn red pillow on top. For sitting, next to wide table, also worn--marked and gouged from years of use. Formica, an old acquanitance, worn down in pillows of brown cloud. Rewarding to the touch...
Youree's yes's and no's, slight movement of her head, either up an down, or subtly downward and to the right. Economies of feeling, expressed with gentle concision.
Marks on stone...
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Tuesday, May 12, 2009
12 May 2009. Like yesterday, like tomorrow. Sun, very light breeze.
Three cement contractors at work across the way. Their over-size white truck pulled up close, air-compressor, jack-hammer. Intermittent racket. Hand tools--a pick, a worn shovel and a wide broom (stiff orange polyester fiber). One of them standing now at side of pit, hands shoved in pockets, testing edge of hole with his boot. Dusty faces, white Portland lime.
Wheel barrow with long sloping red handle...
Monday, May 11, 2009
11 May 2009. Mild sun, milky light.
Reading El Canto del Viento, late.
"Un criollo santiagueño, en Salavina, canta con áspera voz su copla. Pero tiene en su auxilio, para lujo de su decir, su paisaje, su jumial, su arena, el aire de su pago, las candelas que los abuelos encendieron en su sangre..." (Atahualpa Yupanqui)
* * *
("A criollo from Santiago del Estero, in Salavina, sings his copla with a rough voice. But he has in his assistance, bringing a kind of luxury to his speech, his landscape, his Jumial, his sandy earth, the air of his home place, and the candles that his grandparents set burning in his blood...")
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Friday, May 08, 2009
8 May 2009. Sun, quiet filtered May light...
Late into the evening…or was it night…or was it? Raucous double song—both ends of the table—merging at times into one emphatic wave. “…from redwood forests…" Greg’s clarinet obligatos, musical observations, as of a landscape. Anthony and Steph, side by side, Nicole, smiling. Glimpses of faces, engaged, from so many beginnings. Origins, as in the touch of a pencil on soft paper...
A piece-work quilt, admitting all impossibility. Affections, too, also impossible... Or perhaps not. Gerrel and Mildred, almost dancing. Aimee's shoulders, moving like the hills...
Songs, and Places...
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Thursday, May 07, 2009
7 May 2009. Sun all of a sudden. Blue sky, one puffy pink-white cloud, tucked in behind new 7-eleven roof.
The claims of the ancient accordeoniste. Or not so ancient, perhaps. Fields of Salta, Jujuy, or somewhere in the litoral. A man in a chair in an open field. Button box with single strap, pushed into closed position. The second figure, Carlos Vega, doyen of Argentine musical folklore, who leans over the chair. Trim and precisely dressed--the starched shirt, flaired bow tie. Shape of his head like that of some particularly curious little boy--now grown, wandering the countryside, the mountains, the fields, in search of song.
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Wednesday, May 06, 2009
6 May 2009. From salamanca to concert stage, decked out in gaucho gear, inevitably. The music, however, holds... In the tradition of the blind harp player (as with the Ukrainian bandura--from the Greek pandora--the instrument used by ancient Zaparozhian Cossack bards to accompany the dumy, their national epic poems).
"Nostalgia Indígena," one of Chazarreta's pieces--but what precisely is the meaning here?
Atahualpa Yupanqui: La Corpachada--mountain ceremony among the Cuyos, coca, horse mane, bull's hide, threads from a poncho--offerings, early evening, deposited in a pit dug in center of a corral high in the Andean foothills...
Que la Pachamama los reciba,
regalitos de la tierra...
Que la Pacha nos ampare,
que multiplique la hacienda...
Aunque se agrande el corral,
que se güelva cielo y tierra...
* * *
(May the Pachamama receive them,
these little gifts of the earth...
May the Pacha protect us
and multiply the flock...
Even as the corral is made large,
may heaven and earth be returned...)
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Tuesday, May 05, 2009
5 May 2009. Gray dawn, rain in the night. Sound of gulls up on the avenue--Javed's aviary breakfast program.
Or Domingo Aguirre, whose mysterious and beautiful harp illuminates "La Atamisqueña" on an early folkloric recording. A santiagueño, like Andrés Chazarreta-- but received with great enthusiasm in Buenos Aires, where in 1925 a distinguished visitor had occasion to hear Chazarreta's musicians in the Teatro 25 de Mayo:
"Entre los espectadores se destacaba el profesor Albert Einstein, quien se encontraba dictando conferencias en la capital. Este declaró «que la música le produjo una honda impresión por su misticismo, su originalidad y la intensidad de su expresión ... ». Einstein se acercó a saludar al grupo y éste le retribuyó realizando una función en su honor. El cronista de un diario de Buenos Aires reconoció en su columna que ni él ni muchos autorizados en temas artísticos podían explicar a Einstein «el significado mítico» de las obras sin el programa donde daban a conocer lo que se representaba como por ejemplo «Nostalgia indígena», «La Telesita», y la «Cacharpaya»." (fundacióncultural.org, Santiago del Estero)
("Among the spectators there stood out Professor Albert Einstein, who happened to be giving conferences in the capital. According to Einstein, 'the music produced in him a deep impression, because of its mysticism, its originality and the intensity of its expression...' Einstein came up to greet the group (of Chazarreta's musicians), who responded by presenting an event in his honor. A journalist in one of the Buenos Aires newspapers noted in his column that neither he himself nor those authorized on artistic themes were able to explain to Einstein 'the mythic significance' of the musical works without a program that made clear what was being represented, as for example, "Nostalgia indigena," "La Telesita," and "La Carchapaya.")
Monday, May 04, 2009
4 May 2009. Late spring rain, gray skies. Lila in red woolen coat, standing in shadow doorway. Nepal...
Reading late: El Canto del Viento. "Por más que la dicha busco..."
Andrés Chazarreta... Santiagueño...
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Friday, May 01, 2009
1 May 2009. Light gray sky, wet streets, rain.
Miss Argentina from 1967. A magazine cover, interior with pale green. Bit of desk or side table to the left, stoneware bowl, small furled glass plate, set against pale green wall--a color more insitutional than domestic, but recall, we are in someone else's world. Striped top, gray-gray-bluish-pink, and a robin's egg skirt verging on the mauve. Modest, in some knowing way, the red field above and to the left, announcing...
Gente y la Actualidad...
Posted by Anthony Dubovsky at 10:27 AM No comments:
30 April 2009. Small clouds floating high above, packed close, off the River Plate... El pato anteojillo--speculana specularis--the spectacled duck to us. Pathetic fallacy at work, even here, in Bariloche, the remote foothills of the Andes. Whose range includes southern Chile and west-central Argentina, nesting "by fast flowing rivers...and nearby standing waters..."
Posted by Anthony Dubovsky at 10:22 AM No comments:
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