I Speak of the City: Jorge Luis Borges and Cantórbery Cuevas Tortolero

The Wounded City

This City (I thought) is so horrific that its mere existence, the mere fact of its having endured, even in the middle of a secret desert, pollutes the past and the future and somehow compromises the stars. So long as it endures, no one in the world can ever be happy or courageous.
– Jorge Luis Borges, “The Immortal”

Caracas is one of those places about which men have differed widely and intensely: A paradisiacal valley, according to Oviedo y Baños. Don Alonso Escobar, canon of the Cathedral at the dawn of the 18th century: “O you Caracas! Generous object / of that Empire, whose sacred face / is venerated by more people than spheres the sun turns…” Someone else: “Promising seed of an eternal orchard.” And there are those who even today defend its aptitude: even though its current crime statistics – the highest in the world? – are too astonishing to be the product of an exemplary home.

The rest of Cantórbery Cuevas Tortolero’s The Wounded City is available at venepoetics.blogspot.com

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