I’ve been reading too much Macedonio lately, Museo de la novela de la Eterna to be exact, and this has added immensely to my already elevated delirium of daily existence. Meanwhile it has suddenly become apparent to the civil society of this Great Nation that the Order of Wearers of Flags and Religious Symbols have, in fact, spent several years living in a fictional narrative world in which the End of the World has been initiated by allowing Sick-Child to see a doctor. And even though this novel has been exposed as precisely what it says it is, a novel, the Order of Wearers of Flags and Religious Symbols continue to insist that they must re-baptize the President for what he is not, the False Prophet. Because in reality, the President is not a False Prophet, but President False False Prophet, or False President Falseprophet.
So I ask you: To whom would you prefer to listen in this situation: Macedonio Fernández or Ted Cruz? The answer to those of you old enough to have watched Bill Murray in the 70s is obvious: Ricardo Montalbán.
Then this passage calls out to me from the ether, first in Spanish then English translation:
A la mañana a siguiente, muy oscura, batiendo el viento y la lluvia la casa, partieron casi todos casi sin verse, y antes que todos, la Eterna. Los que se hubieran sentido tan abrigados y felices en la casa envuelta en eucaliptus que le daban paz y cuya música de tempestad fuera tan placentero escuchar en esa paz, debían todos alejarse, marchar separados, aún la pareja que tuviera trayecto común, ni debían quedarse guarecidos donde hallaran amparo. La orden cruda era: separarse al partir, aunque para las cosas espirituales que se le habían encomendado ningún rumbo ni el partir fueran necesarios.
And now from Margaret Schwartz’s translation from Open Letter Press (2010), for the sake of my Spanish-impaired readership:
The next morning they all left, with scarcely a chance to see each other. It was very dark, and the wind and rain were beating on the house. Eterna left first of all. They all had to leave, walking alone, those who had felt so happy and comfortable in the house surrounded by peaceful eucalyptus trees whose music, in the storm, was so pleasant to listen to. Even a couple traveling in the same direction could not go together, nor could they remain in the shelter of the estancia. The basic routine was this: each one separates upon leaving, even spiritual things that had been commissioned by nothing in particular and did not necessarily have to leave.
The essential riddle of October 2013 is this: If a Democrat wins an election in November, and a Republican loses an election in November, can they avoid civil war? Or in other words, if a Democrat boards a plane in Illinois for Washington DC at 12:01pm and a Republican boards a plane in Texas for DC at 12:09pm, will they meet in time… in time for what? Their ranches are gerrymandered, they don’t live in the same space, and their respective jets do not travel at the same velocity. Each one separates upon leaving, living in a separate time and separate space, as the eucalyptus in the storm yields music at its own pace, its own rhythm. They are eternal these politicians, these trees.
This is a problem to be solved: The crude order of things. The answer to this problem is not Ricardo Montalbán, though He will come again in his own good time. The answer is… the plane, the plane.
Could it be that Graham Harman not read Macedonio yet? That would be remarkable.