June 1, 2013

A Nosa Terra


I find my reflection,

in spite of the devastation of  this accursed progress, in spite of the prepotent vulgarity that is this new American Europe that’s invaded every crevice of this ancient land...I can still stand on this Galician hill by the sea. An emigrant returned home a thousand years later, or ago, to ancestral shores. These shores, once dotted with small, isolated farming villages raided by marauding Vikings, are now over-developed and crowded with power lines. Still being invaded. Still being attacked...

Yet, somehow, a part of the land remains breathing and  free. I feel I know the secret language of these hills, of these rías...the smell of this struggling land. Can’t commodify inherent intimacy through cyberspace. Not yet. These invaders, native and foreign, don’t know this language. They don’t hear it or feel it. It doesnt belong to them...They must silence it.  

Tonight new homemade wine, total resistance and no patience; there is no time for self-deception left in me. Action burns in my heart and in my mind. I compile words of resistance in three languages. “The word is our weapon” say the compañeros in Chiapas. So a word in three languages should become three weapons. It should...

These words…I need to live them, feel them, nurture them, polish them, fire them… or  I don’t exist, I am not breathing, I am dead. 


I now look at this storm brewing; How wonderful and how frightening.  I saw it tonight by accident in a mirror of sea and sky. Mere reflection of what is there in my eyes too…In the eyes of millions. That something that says to constantly live, love, think, talk, hope, act, arise, destroy, build or you might silently become one of them; one of those who’ve ceased to be outraged by injustice, unaware of their crime, of their madness. 

I taste of new wine and action. I can almost touch the warm body of the lover waiting for me across the ocean…Revolutionary thoughts are love thoughts; active, vibrant, and sensuous; transcending. Particularly when contemplating change on lonely cliff-sides by the Cantabrian Sea. There is enough death, life, rain, and salt here to ignite love in a hundred  desperate hearts. Standing  on the edge of time with my eyes closed, I lick the salt and rain off my lips and let the wind sway me. One wrong step and I could drown in this now satisfied longing for the sound of these waves crashing all around me. 

To the north, sister Ireland. To the east, sister Euskadi. In the ria behind me, my father, and his father, and his mother, and all of the mothers and fathers of our peasant family were born. I’ve imagined or been told we have all stood upon this same cliff and faced the same ocean for hundreds of years. I don’t doubt it. We humans are not as unique in our actions and emotions as we might wish to believe. The cult of the uniqueness of the individual is another bourgeois myth. We all love, and cry, and laugh , and feel, or not, accordingly. And we all know why anyone would want to come here this late at night; a place for lovers, thinkers, criminals, dreamers, cowards, heroes, suicidals and revolutionaries...

 Time, time, time. Time keeps pressing under my skin through tears of fire for what’s been lost. Beyond the horizon, I retrieve a hundred forgotten memories, and grip that eternal longing for a comrade with a storm upon her shores and a flame in her heart hot enough to warm the frigid waters of this Costa de la Muerte. To lay with me. Ride out this storm. Feel me. Arm me.

By Adrian Boutureira 
Galicia, March 1, 2003
5.30 am

Two powerful Galician women; a poet and a singer.
Listening to them while reading this piece, brings me back to that space...
Negra Sombra, a poem by Rosalia de Castro
Música de Xoan Mont, performed by Luz Casal and Carlos Nuñez