June 13, 2021

My farewell to Caballero Bonald

94 years ago that singular voice of Spanish poetry and narrative was born in Jerez, a hallucinated person who has explained reality in the rumors of the mystery, who when he frequented the rehearsal he did so rigorously, but without renouncing the creativity that he imposed. imagination to the verifiable.

And that when he told me his life, life, in his splendid memoirs, Time of Lost Wars, he did not renounce to enlarge the diaphragm of his camera or to reduce the scene at the convenience of what was told. But not to modify the truth, but to accept from memory the nuances that time imposed on photography.

Thorough in the narration of what he experienced, Caballero Bonald did not trust memory as one who trusts in a notarial act, but as one who surrenders to the chiaroscuro of time, accepting the traps of memory, which was not a catalog of exactitudes but of interpretations.

As a memorialist, he was the denial of the fatuous and he went through history with modesty, and from the experience of the individual who tells his life openly, or only with the concealment that modesty imposes on him, after having fought against him, he extracted one less portrait adulterated of a time than that of historians and politicians, a portrait that did not exclude the domestic scenes of the underground, the bars and diners where we got disorganized or the most sympathetic inconsistencies in which we incurred. And he generally refused in his habit of living at the will of the hero or the conceited.

He liked more than exaggerating adversities with humor, small cowardice or his own clumsiness, when he elegantly portrayed himself as a loser, without pathos or complaints, he sometimes allows us to witness his exaggerations, truths that are so natural in him, with full assent.

The finesse with which he criticized someone in some strokes did not prevent the forcefulness of the blow he dealt him, and the love, fidelity and loyalty to others that nurtured his memories completed his portrait of a decent intellectual, who has retouched his photograph for the better. of the memory.

But Caballero Bonald did not go into the mists of time to hide, nor did he like the beautiful word to soften the story of the non-complacent reality, he searched in the mist for the mysterious reality that memory could distract him with its deceptions and used the word dear to express courage.

Caballero Bonald’s citizen courage was never captive to his charms, and age, far from lowering his sly anger, increased his rage as a 94-year-old youth, which was never those of a curmudgeon, but those of a manual offender, as always showed in his poetry.

The more courageous he was, the more irony he exhibited, and the humor redeemed him from any distant pamphlet temptation.

His gaze was frank, welcoming, smiling if malicious, but it was the absorbed gaze of a concentrated man who gazed out to sea.

Goodbye, my dear Pepe. My neighbor from Madrid so close. Goodbye.


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