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Cortazar Julio, English, Español, Italiano, Literature

Happy New Year – Julio Cortazar


Look, I don’t ask much,
just your hand, to hold it
like a little frog who’d sleep there happily.
I need that door you gave me
for coming into your world, that little chunk
of green sugar, of a lucky ring.
Can’t you just spare me your hand tonight
at the end of a year of hoarse-voiced owls?
You can’t, for technical reasons. So 
I weave it in the air, warping each finger, 
the silky peach of the palm
and the back, that country of blue trees.
That’s how I take it and hold it, as 
if so much of the world
depended on it, 
the succession of the four seasons, 
the crowing of the roosters, the love of human beings.

julio cortazar

Happy new year

Mira, no pido mucho,
solamente tu mano, tenerla
como un sapito que duerme así contento.
Necesito esa puerta que me dabas
para entrar a tu mundo, ese trocito
de azúcar verde, de redondo alegre.
¿No me prestás tu mano en esta noche
de fìn de año de lechuzas roncas?
No puedes, por razones técnicas. Entonces
la tramo en el aire, urdiendo cada dedo,
el durazno sedoso de la palma
y el dorso, ese país de azules árboles.
Así la tomo y la sostengo,
como si de ello dependiera
muchísimo del mundo,
la sucesión de las cuatro estaciones,
el canto de los gallos, el amor de los hombres.

Julio Cortázar
de “Salvo el crepúsculo”, Buenos Aires, Ed. Alfaguara, 1984

Autoportrait, Paris, 1975

Happy new year
Guarda, non chiedo molto,
solamente la tua mano, tenerla
come una piccola rana che così dorme contenta.
Io ho bisogno di questa porta che aprivi
perché vi entrassi, nel tuo mondo, questo pezzetto
di zucchero verde, di tonda allegria.
Non mi presti la mano questa notte
di fine d’anno, di civette rauche?
Tu per ragioni tecniche non puoi. Allora
io la tesso nell’aria, ordendo ogni dito,
e la pesca setosa della palma
e il dorso, questo paese d’alberi azzurri.
Così la prendo così la sostengo, come
se da ciò dipendesse
moltissimo del mondo,
il succedersi delle stagioni,
il canto dei galli, l’amore degli uomini.

Julio Cortázar
(Traduzione di Gianni Toti)
da “Le ragioni della collera”, Edizioni Fahrenheit 451, 1995

This is “Happy New Year.”  In interviews, like the one given to the “Paris Review,” Cortázar often made the point that the real and the surreal are one and the same thing–I think he felt the glass partition between consciousness and the unconscious to be porous, or non-existent.  His novels, like 62: A Model Kit  aren’t at all like dreams, but they are dreamy, the prose languorous rather than sharp; there’s nothing business-like about Cortázar’s writing, and he’s never eager to take the reader to some destination of plot or character development. Things pop up in the stories embedded in Hopscotch, like that marvelous long account of Horacio/Julio wandering into an eccentric piano recital by the deluded impresario Berthe Trepat–this is writing as jazz, Charlie Parker put into words, and Horacio/Julio is, in La Maga’s words, “like a glass of water in a storm.”

He was a beautiful man who died too young (at 69), possibly from a blood transfusion.  He was born in Brussels, taught elementary school in rural Argentina where he began to write, then moved to Paris in 1951.  He offended the Peronists who ruled his native country and wasn’t welcome–and that was all right since Paris was his natural home.  He translated for UNESCO, played the trumpet, collected books and art, wrote and thought and lived.

Source: http://talentedreader.blogspot.fr/2014/02/beautiful-cortazar.html

More here Paris Review interview: http://www.theparisreview.org/interviews/2955/the-art-of-fiction-no-83-julio-cortazar


One thought on “Happy New Year – Julio Cortazar

  1. Reblogged this on The Road to Ithaka.


    Posted by ADC | January 3, 2015, 5:33 pm

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