It is Sunday. And like all the other Sundays of my life, it spells a kind of ordinariness: the light is stable in the vision and the objects sit quietly in their given places. The radio blares the romantic songs of Basil Valdez, and on the opposite room, three people play poker. The dogs are pretty contemplative, having been fed just enough to maintain an animal kind of stupor.

I was feeling down and out some moments ago, the kind of feeling that you get when you are so close to life you can hardly breathe. When things just crowd around you and you want to push yourself into the brilliant, waiting air. When you just want to have an exit. Sometimes I think the blood is just lugubrious and the senses slow in their responses. But the body should not be blamed: it only communicates an internal phenomenon, beyond the accidents of neurons and their corresponding receptors.

During these moments something speaks, peering through the curtains of the mind. When I heard its voice, I felt a shiver, and things dropped uncushioned and broken. Then I started asking, “Where have I been through all these months?” It was as if I was standing in this place with no time because the world was still and the sky was a plain wash of blue. Such incident was frightening. For some minutes things moved and flowed without me. My desire was simple and unfulfilled: continuance.

Yes, I must admit to believing: the world is a basin of possibilities. If I just look around, there are many things to be plumbed for all their energies: the fragmentation of veins on the underside of leaves, the clouds in all their magnificent slowness, books of poems and days, and the sea that rims the city, water’s truest behavior. But what, if for a moment, these things don’t make sense anymore? Darkness suddenly floods the body whose only response is to swim. I remember a poem by Luisa Igloria, saying: “An earthquake in July/ Reduces us to our true/ Capital: pails of porous/ Mortar, loose stones, aprons/ Of ash and powder/ An aggregate of sundered/ Beams, Their iron nails/ Still wed to yellowed wood.”

The bronze legacy of the Aytas

You can say that I just went through an earthquake and am still feeling the tremors. I, myself, can’t even trace its origin, the epicenter. It must have been the accumulation of movements of my various layered lives, now that the world fitted a bigger and more difficult frame. It is so hard to live, and leave, I must tell you. There are so many memories to carry, so many wounds to heal but despite this, the assurance that one day the soul will break free from the resistance of weight to sing into the light, alive and full of hope.

Now Sunday is folding, slipping into the night with its predictably cold and bitter stars. Perhaps, the night would be longer and the Siberian winds would bite deeper into the skin. I will hold nothing accountable for regret or release. I will go through this Sunday like all the Sundays of my life which I was able to survive.


Unlike the Sunday I described to you full of jagged edges and uneven surfaces, this one is smooth, something that moves and travels naturally like woven water called river. The cold, though familiar, still bites, and outside, everything glistens in an evening of rain and semi-fallen stars. The telephone wires shiver like manes of horses ready to charge. Forty-five minutes more and it will be Monday, the day for beginnings and encounters, the day which helplessly drives us to look forward to the end of the week.

During these cool, collected moments, one is brought to a more intimate conversation with life. When all the noises and colors of daily living have subsided, and it is just you and life that are there, in whatever occasion of solitude or engagement, something bright and knowledgeable unfolds, from which you can look at things within and without you with honesty and patience.

'Incredibles' artist is Fine Arts alumna

It is through this event that I have come to realize that living—the art of making sense of life—is a matter of perception. It simply means that the way one look’s at the world is how one lives it and that one’s comprehension is one’s knowledge.

But this is not to say that it is without limitations. There is no single and perfect angle that knows well how to embrace the world in its wholeness and multiplicity. Things are in the state of flux, and you yourself are travelling, and because of this, you fumble for definitions and clarifications with which to hold everything still. And from such confusion that difficulty emerges, that mistakes are repeated.

It is important to allow things, and oneself, settle with the questions. Like a scientist, one should probe them, know their values. One should, with great strength of vision, analyze the object in question, and if it doesn’t present any solution, one should know how to release it, because it’s nature is to thrive beyond the margins of the body, from where it could be heard more truthfully and clearly.

Now that I have licked the fog from my sight, the world is suddenly at peace. As a wanderer, I would continue touching eyes with landscapes, trees that know how to be patient in the sun or rain, birds the color of ash. What I fear would be momentary. Darkness has turned into a companion, and if something startles like flight in the near distance, my heart will seek it.


It’s again, Sunday. This day is beginning to hold some significance for me. It clears my space for meditation and some blind jump into the unknown. Everything is thick in the midnight unrest and my mind still struggles to free itself from thoughts driving me away from pursuing the issue at hand, something important.

But I am still calculating its edges, to be honest. I trust the words’ power to corner what-it-is-that-throws-me-off-center in some dark avenue of the spirit. I believe in salvation, even if that salvation refers to the liberation from oneself, or at least from the fragments that lead to a more severe kind of disintegration.

SARS update

At exactly this moment, my favorite dog barks at me as though I were a stranger. I do not understand his confusion: perhaps it’s caused by my new haircut, or the way the radiance of the computer monitor creates ghost-shadows on my face. I cannot blame him. Lately, I can’t also recognize myself unlike before when I would just wake up in the morning and the sun would float on the sky and I would easily enter the world’s large rooms. Every thing I do now is calculated with extreme measure, almost to the dimension of a line. This particular slowness just intensifies the dilemma, the dilemma of being held hostage at a juncture where I should have supposedly taken off.

Let me put it straight: I don’t feel that something is happening to my life. The days are grinding into the thin garment of my body. I walk, eat, sleep, tattered all over. The poverty, if I can let you imagine and understand, is grave even if brave and my heart mutters all the time as though stricken with an incurable sickness. My friend called it dissonance and I do not know how I can unravel this knot so I can swallow this whole idea of living effortlessly.

So I say: Take charge! So I say: Feed the faith with more wood! Soon this will be over and the emptiness will fall to where it originally resided and the world shall breathe light into the weather I wear for comfort. Something keeps whispering it is impossible, this long-overdue rebirth. But I am loving it, with the rest of who I am, no matter how seriously it has been rubbed through.

I will watch myself tomorrow with care and patience, how I will negotiate through the silences. I will slam open the doors of the rooms of this world, because I am human and involved, because it’s my life which is at stake.


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