Laughing Out Loud

Source: Sobrevueloscuervos.com

26/4-21/5/2015

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VIGGO:

I'm flying again, another plane to cross the sea, to erase the distance I put between your belly and my dreams, mother of mine. There is no longer any hurry, if there ever was any. I will see you when I land, as usual. Your body is expecting me without waiting, and I miss you greatly...

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© Viggo Mortensen.
 
Grace died last night, my mother and the mother of Charles and Walter. I'm flying towards Boston where, after a long wait, I'll change to the flight that, if luck prevails, will take me to Syracuse. From there on by car. A journey I know very well, but this time all that awaits me is the memory of the mysterious smile of the woman who brought us into this world, and of that slightly elusive look with which she would welcome me of late because the Parkinson's disease she suffered from had limited her physical mobility so much. I could be travelling to Tokyo or to the bottom of the sea; my mother is no longer in any fixed place. I was surprised not to have been with her at the moment of her last breath. I've been with her so many times during these past years. Last year she almost died in my arms, but, in the end, the day she left I was not there. I was surprised, but I understand that it's normal, as normal as anything else in life. These things happen, separations that make us what we are. My brother Walter arrived an hour after our mother's death, and I'm arriving the next day. I´m very tired. I haven't slept at all well, despite drinking all the wine they had to offer on this flight. After flying endless hours in silence, I've decided to try to listen for a while to the music from the plane's audio system. Right now they are playing a song by Chavela Vargas, the great singer we have talked about before in this column. It's called "En el último trago" [At the Last Drop.]

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I'm listening to the words while watching the clouds that cover the Atlantic. I will send you the lyrics of this song on landing. I hope to pass out soon; I can't take it anymore.

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I arrived in Boston. I slept the last half hour of the journey. I dreamt I was acting in a scene, I think it was a play, with Lionel Messi. Seriously. In my dream La Pulga [tr. note: The Flea, Messi's nickname] seemed to me to be an excellent actor and a great co-star. He had a tremendous sense of truth on stage and a subtlety that only geniuses have. Everything he was doing, his way of looking and listening, was very real. An actor whose work was clean and deep, unpretentious. We made a good team and the audience was enthusiastic. I didn't realise it was a dream until I came out of the plane. My head is aching. I should have drunk some water with all that red wine. I woke up realizing that my mother is dead, and that this is not going to change; there is no turning back. Here are the song's lyrics:

At the Last Drop

Drink this bottle with me
and at the last drop we leave.
I want to see how it feels to forget you
without placing your hands on my eyes.
Tonight I'm not going to beg you
Tonight you are truly leaving.

It's so hard trying to forget you
without feeling that you no longer love me
The years have taught me nothing.
I always stumble on the same mistakes
once again drinking a toast with strangers
and crying over the same sorrows,
drink this bottle with me
and with the last drop, kiss me.
We'll hope there won't be any witnesses
in case you feel ashamed.

If one day we run into each other by chance
don't bend down or speak to me looking the other way,
we'll simply shake hands
and then let people gossip.
The years have taught me nothing....

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Lunati was dreadful last Saturday; that arrogant referee who has caused CASLA so much trouble in the last few years almost stole the three points from us. He allowed a lot of kicks and Mas' goal was wrongly disallowed, but San Lorenzo was able to have a valuable victory against Vélez that keeps them near the top. If the team keeps a certain level and remains near the top during the next three months, there's the possibility of a big match in the Bombonera against Boca in August to decide the championship. But much remains to be done, and as I see it, Bauza's approach continues to be very cautious. I repeat, for the umpteenth time, that this doesn't seem to me to be the best historic San Lorenzo soccer. That's why we lost almost all of the Cup finals except the Libertadores, which we barely won with a penalty shot. Now that I will never be able to see my mother's face again, I am more convinced than ever of the importance of giving everything to the present. San Lorenzo has to play every match to the death, attacking fearlessly. At least Buffarini, Mercier and Torrico continue being fierce. If Patón wants to win the local tournament and the Copa Argentina, he's going to have to have the balls and heart of a warrior, but I don't see too much bravery in him right now. With the fact that we approach the opponent's goal so seldom in any organized way and with the bad aim of our forwards, it's a miracle that we continue winning these matches. And we lose against teams like Aldosivi. That's no way to win a long championship [series]. Bauza might be a great person and it could be that the players like him a lot, but he has to realize that in both life and soccer, it doesn't work to save the forces and the claws of a champion for future matches. Come on, Patón, play to win in the present.

Buffarini in combat
Buffarini in combat
 
FABIÁN:

Cuervo: I've been thinking about writing you all day, but even more about talking to you. What I miss most about loved ones when they aren't around - because of mortality, trips, life's ups and down - is the voice. I would like to talk with you to tell you that, in part, there's a bit of our parents in each of us, and that they always exist in us, like a process of alchemy. What a beautiful woman your mom was. Now I think - but you know this better than I - that the thing to do when someone dies is to release them so that they can travel without resistance. The Tibetans do that and for me it was revelatory when I had to let go of my mom, my godfather, my aunt, foundational members of my family, unforgettable beings. There is an ending in the Star Wars trilogy that moves me a lot. It's when Luke Skywalker sees that his loved ones, teachers and parents, are watching him from the other side of the Force. They are always there, we are there. I love you very much and I love in you the part from your mother that, in some way, I also knew.

Luke and the Force
Luke and the Force
 
VIGGO:

Thanks, brother, for your lovely words, for sharing your lives with mine. When I get home tonight, I will call you. It's better to talk than to write, as you say. It's been hard for me to talk on the phone these days, but now I'm ready. We said a fine goodbye to my mother and I feel fine when I think about her. At times, of course, I cry. We cry. That's fine. Fine because she continues to live in me, in my brothers and my son, in everyone who knew her. I no longer have her expression or her voice, but, as you wrote, I am her. I wish I could always say, "I am her or I am him" of everyone that I know or meet. With my mother, it's easy. I feel as though her face, her eyes, her mouth, her way of expressing herself and reacting, live in me, that she influences my behavior, my sadness and my happiness.

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I'm writing to you now from Copenhagen. Several days have passed. I'm watching a horrendous match between Real Madrid and Juventus. First game of the semi-finals of the Champions [League]. Ramos is totally lost there in the middle where Ancelotti mistakenly put him. Pirlo is 10 times better in that area. Ramos as midfield defender works much better. He should put Chicharito in the match, I think. Cristiano Ronaldo, as always in big matches, is a useless, frustrated ghost. Please, bring back Modric. Bale: nothing. CR7: nothing - except that he was able to push a ball for the goal that may be worth gold in the second leg in Bernabeu [tr. note: Real Madrid stadium]. Tévez, Vidal and Morata have been free to do what they wanted. [Real] Madrid has a defence that is as expensive as it is sloppy. Now it's time for the big comeback at home. If they can achieve it, they´ll arrive strong at the final in Berlin, healed and ready to kill again, like 'Jason Bourne' after one of his movie beatings. I hope that Ancelotti won´t play to win 1-0 and at the heartless catenaccio [tr. note: Wikipedia has: "Catenaccio or The Chain is a tactical system in football with a strong emphasis on defence"]. It's necessary to attack with James, Chicharito. If CR7 pushes another ball to goal, or has the luck of shooting one of his many penalties, fine.

Bourne
Bourne
 
Barcelona is a machine. Bayern [München] got their faces painted red and blue in Camp Nou. Terrific match by Messi, who was everywhere, organising, attacking, defending, giving a master class on geometry undiscovered by human beings until now. An untamed and elegant beast who was the great nightmare of the goalkeeper Neuer and his coach Pep Guardiola.

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More days have passed. Everything gets confused. I accept it, little by little. Since I returned to Europe after being with my brothers and the body of our mother in the USA, I've been travelling and doing a lot of promotion work, especially in Denmark. For Jauja and also for Loin des hommes (Far from Men,) the French movie based on a story by Camus. The truth is that in no way did I want to do more interviews, see more people, be photographed. I'm more than exhausted, and the promotion seems totally absurd to me now. My friend Michael Blake, the godfather of my son Henry, and author of novels including Dances with Wolves, also died. These deaths, and the accumulated fatigue after more than a year of promoting the films has me mentally cornered. Blake was a great guy, a very positive man, very generous with his vital energy, a lover of life, of our world. During his last years, he spoke openly and without any fear of death. He laughed at it. This is what I posted about him on percevalpress.com:

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Michael Blake, or "Rides Alone," as he sometimes referred to himself among friends, has left the building. He leaves a family and the many people who got to know and love him to keep sorting their way through the Big Mystery, as he called our shared existence on this earth. To the countless admirers he gained throughout the world for his novels, including Dances With Wolves and its very popular film adaptation from 1990, he is a singular voice in the Western and Native American story-telling genres. To defenders of the buffalo, the mountain lion, the wild horse, and other four-leggeds of North America, he has long been a champion advocate. To those who knew him well, he was an eternal optimist who approached death smiling and unafraid, grateful for his time in the sun. To see him off with the kind of courage he showed us, we offer these two Lakota Ghost Dance songs:

Wana' yan ma' niye
Wana' yan ma' niye

Tatanka wan ma' niya
Tatanka wan ma' niya

Ate heye lo
Ate heye lo


Now he is walking
Now he is walking

There is a buffalo walking
There is a buffalo walking

Says the father
Says the father

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Miyelo
Miyelo
Miyelo

Tunkasila heya ca
Cewakiya ca namahun yelo


It is I
It is I
It is I

Grandfather says so
I pray to him and he hears me


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Last edited: 15 July 2015 13:44:35
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