This was a tough one… I found a few pdf files in Portugese,but none were in English… This is a Google Translation from Portugese.  This is not an entire selection, but pieces of her work..



Portuguese to English translation

Isabel Allende
Eva Luna
He then said to Scheherazade:
“Sister, may Allah protect you, tells a story that makes us spend the night …”
(From The Thousand and One Nights)
Chapter 1
My name is Eva, which means life, according to a book that my mother
consulted to choose my name. I was born in the back room of a house
grew dark and of antique furniture, books in Latin and human mummies, but
it failed to make me melancholy, because I came into the world with a
breath of the jungle in memory. My father, an Indian with yellow eyes, coming from the
place to gather one hundred rivers, woods and smelled the sky never looked
forward, because it had been created under the canopy of trees and the light seemed to him
indecent. Consuelo, my mother spent her childhood in an enchanted region,
where for centuries, adventurers have sought the city of pure gold
the conquistadors saw when they spied the depths of his own
ambition. Was marked by the landscape and, in a sense, instilled in me that
The missionaries gathered Consuelo when he did not even know
floor and was just a dog naked, covered in mud and excrement, which
came to creep across the bridge from the wharf as a tiny Jonas
whale vomited by freshwater. When giving him a bath, not shown
a doubt, she was a girl, what they must have created some confusion,
but since there was no case for the shooting was the river, so you put a
cloth to cover the shame him, threw him in a few drops of lemon
eyes to cure the infection that prevented her from opening them and named it with the
the first female name that they came to mind. They brought it without seeking
explanations about its origin and without many excesses, certain that if the
Divine Providence had kept alive to find, too
would watch for their physical and spiritual integrity or, at worst, lead to
the sky along with other innocents. Consuelo grew up in rigid
hierarchy of the Mission with a particular place. It was not exactly a
servant, did not belong to the same category of school and when the Indians
asked which of the priests was his father, took a slap for being
insolent. He told me he had been dumped by a Dutch navigator,
adrift in a boat, but it sure is a legend that later
invented to get rid of the harassment of my questions. In fact, I believe
that he knew nothing of their parents or the way that appeared
The Mission was a small oasis in the midst of lush greenery,
growing tangled in itself, since the water’s edge to the foothills of
geological monumental towers, erected by the firmament as errors
God. Here, time is winding and distances deceive the human eye,
induce the traveler to walk in circles. The air smells of damp and thick
Sometimes the flowers, herbs, sweat of men and animals breath. The oppressive heat, not
a breeze to ease, boil the stones and blood in the veins. To
evening the sky is filled with phosphorescent mosquitoes, whose bites cause
endless nightmares and night, can clearly hear the pious bird,
the shrieks of monkeys and the distant roar of waterfalls that are born in
mountains at high altitude and burst down here with a din of war. The
modest building, straw and clay, with a tower and a bell crossed sticks
to call to Mass, balanced as all the huts on stilts
buried in the mud of a river of opalescent waters, which limits are lost in
reverberation of the light. The houses seemed to float canoes drifting between silent
garbage, dead dogs and rats and inexplicable white flowers.
Consuelo was easy to distinguish from afar, with his long hair
as a red welt on the green eternal fire of that nature. Your
playmates of bellies were some little Indians
protruding, a cheeky parrot reciting the Our Father interplant
words and a monkey on a chain attached to the leg of a table, it
let out from time to time, to go in search of a bride in the woods, but
returning always scratching flea in one place. At this time, since
walked by those Protestants to stop distributing Bibles, preaching
against the Vatican and loading under the sun and rain on their pianos
carts, to sing converted into public acts. This rivalry
such dedication required of Catholic priests that they were busy little
Consuelo and tanned by the sun she survived, badly fed with cassava and
fish infested with parasites, bites by mosquitoes and free as a bird.
In addition to helping with the housework, attending religious services and
some classes in reading, arithmetic and catechism, she had no other
obligations, wandered sniffing the flora and fauna chasing, head
full of images, smells, colors and flavors, brought tales of the border and
dragged by the river myths.
She was about twelve years old when she met the man of chickens, a
Portuguese grimy by the weather, hard and dry out, full of laughter for
inside. Their eating birds loafed all kinds of shiny object
they encountered along the way, so that later they opened the owner chat
a stroke of knife and collect a few grains of gold, enough to
rich, but enough to feed his delusions. One morning the
Portuguese discovered the girl with white skin like a fire in
head, skirt and legs rolled up and dipped into the swamp to be judged
another attack of intermittent fever. Launched a whistle of surprise, it sounded
as the order to make walking a horse. The signal crossed the room, she lifted her
face, eyes met and both smiled the same way. From
that day were often dazzled him to contemplate
and she to learn to sing songs of Portugal.
– Let’s dig for gold – said one day, man.
Plunged into the woods to lose sight of the mission bell, thickness
inside, in ways that only he knew. They searched throughout the day
chickens, calling them cackling with cock and catching them in flight when
glimpsed through the foliage. As she squeezed between the knees
he opened them a blow and stick your fingers need to get the nuggets.Those
died were not sewn with needle and thread to continue to serve the master;
the rest were tucked in a bag, each to be sold in the village
other to serve as bait, and with feathers, because they brought bad luck and
provoked the pip of chickens, built a fire. At dusk,
Consuelo returned with disheveled hair, happy, and stained with blood.
Bade farewell to his friend climbed down the ladder from the boat onto the roof
and gave his nose dirty sandals in four two friars of Extremadura,
that the waiting arms crossed over his chest and a terrible expression of
– It’s time to leave for the city – they told him.
Nothing gained from the prayers. Not even allowed to take the
monkey or the parrot, two companions unfit for the new life that
They took her along with five Indian girls tied by
cops to stop them from jumping out of a dugout on the river and disappear.The Portuguese
farewell to Consuelo without touching it, with a lingering look, leaving you
as a souvenir a piece of gold in the form of a millstone, threaded on a cord. It
would use it around her neck for most of his life, until
found who give as proof of love. He saw her for the last time, with
percale faded her apron and a straw hat stuck up to their ears,
barefoot and sad to say goodbye to him with his hand.
The trip began by tributaries of the river by canoe, through a
landscape of madness, then in the back of a mule by steep hills
where at night the thoughts froze and finally by truck
humid plains, wild forests of maples and dwarf pines, paths
sand and salt, but none of this surprised the girl, because who opened
eyes within the more maddening world, loses the capacity for wonder.
During this long journey cried all the tears that kept within,
leaving no room for sadness later. After all the crying, closed
mouth, determined, thereafter, to open it only to answer the essential.
After several days reached the capital and led the Friars
terrified girls to the convent of the Little Sisters of Charity, where a
nun they opened the iron door with a key and led to jailer
a large, shady courtyard, surrounded by corridors, at whose center stood
a source of painted tiles where they drank pigeons, thrushes and hummingbirds. Several
young men in gray uniform, sitting around in the shade, sewed linings
mattresses with curved needles and weaving wicker baskets.
– In prayer and efforts will find relief for your sins. Not
I came to heal the healthy, but to care for the sick. More rejoices Pastor
when he finds his lost sheep than with his flock together.
Word of God, praise his holy name, Amen – or anything
recited like a nun with her hands hidden beneath the folds of habit.
Consuelo did not realize the significance that he provided no rationale
attention, because I was exhausted and crushed it to sense of enclosure.Never
had been walled and look up and see the sky reduced to a
quadrilateral, ruled that he died of asphyxia. When separated from their
traveling companions and led to the Mother Superior’s office, not
thought that was the reason your skin and your eyes clear. The Little Sisters
years did not receive a creature like her, only girls of mixed race,
coming from the poorest neighborhoods and brought into force by the Indian missionaries.
– Who are your parents?
– I do not know.
– When were you born?
– In the year of the comet.
Consuelo already then replaced by poetic rodeo what it lacked in
information. Since we first heard about the comet decided to choose it
as date of birth. During childhood, someone had told him that at that
time, the world waited in terror the wonder of heaven. It was assumed that
emerge as a fire dragon and the contact with the atmosphere
ground, his tail would involve the planet with poisonous gases and heat
molten lava would end all forms of life. Some people
committed suicide not to burn, others preferred to stun him with
junketing, drunkenness and fornication last minute. Even if Benefactor
impressed to see the sky turn green and know that under the influence of
make the hair of the mulatto is uncurl and the Chinese are rippled and
ordered release some opposition, imprisoned for so long that they had
forgotten natural light, although some still retain intact the germ of
rebellion and were willing to bequeath to future generations. Consuelo was
seduced by the idea of ​​being born in the midst of so much terror, despite rumors of
that all newborns that time were horrendous and would continue to
be one year after the comet had disappeared like a ball of ice and dust
– The first thing to do is stop this ass of Satan – decided to
Mother Superior, with both hands clutching the bright copper braid
covered the inner shoulder of the new. He ordered him to cut his hair and
wash his head with a mixture of bleach and Aureolina to kill
lice and mitigate the brazen color, which made him not only half the hair fall
as the remaining clay to acquire a tone better suited to the temperament
and purposes of the religious institution that the original blanket of flames.
Consuelo spent three years in this place, cold in body and soul, clever
and lonely, without believing that the sun squalid courtyard was the same as was
swarm the jungle where he had left home. There was not enough to stir
profane or national prosperity began when someone dug a well
and instead of water, jumped a jet black, thick and stinking like crap
dinosaur. The country was sitting in a sea of ​​oil. This trim a
little sleepy dictatorship, because both the increased wealth of the dictator and
their families, something that spilled over to others. In cities
and the oil fields there were some progress, contact with
wealthy foremen from the north shook the old traditions and a breeze
Modernism has shortened the skirts of women, but in the convent of the Little Sisters
Charity none of this mattered. Life began at four in the
with early morning prayers: The day passed with an immutable order
and ended with the tolling of the six hours of the act of contrition for cleaning
and preparation of the spirit of the event of death, as the night could be
a trip without return. Long silences, slabs polished corridors,
smell of incense and lilies, whisper litanies, dark wooden benches,
unadorned white walls. God’s presence was a totalitarian.
With the exception of the nuns and two servants, only lived in the vast
adobe building tiles and sixteen girls, mostly orphans or
abandoned, they learned to wear shoes, eat with a fork and some
elementary housework to employ later in
humble service jobs, why not put the hypothesis that had
capacity for something else. From the looks, Consuelo was distinguished from the others and
of nuns who, convinced that it did not happen by chance but
was a good sign of divine will, so to great pains to cultivate the
their faith in the hope that it decided to take the habit and serve the Church, but
shocked all his efforts against the resistance of the girl.
She tried it with good will, but never managed to accept that God
religious tyranny that he preached, a deity rather more cheerful,
maternal and compassionate.
– This is the Blessed Virgin Mary – explained to him.
– It’s God?
– No, is the mother of God.
– Yes, but the boss any more in heaven, is God or his mother?
– Shut up, foolish, shut up and pray. Ask God to enlighten you –
advised her.
Consuelo sat in the chapel to look at the altar crowned by Christ
terrifying realism and was reciting the rosary, but soon was lost in
endless adventures of the jungle where the memories were mixed with
characters of sacred history, each with its load of passion,
vendettas, martyrdom and miracles. I devoured it eagerly, the ritual words
Mass, the Sunday sermons, readings sinks, the noises of the night, the wind
between columns of the hall, the expression of the saints and hermits foolish in
niches of the church. Learned to be quiet and kept his immense flow
fables like a treasure quiet until I gave him the opportunity to unleash
this torrent of words he was carrying.
Consuelo was so much property in the chapel, her hands clasped and
placid ruminant, who ran the convent the rumor that was holy and
had visions of heaven, but the Mother Superior, less inclined to believe
miracles that the nuns of the congregation realized that it was not
but only some of sanctity from an incurable distraction. As the girl
showed no enthusiasm for sewing mattresses, or wafers to make
baskets made by the end of their education and put it to serve in a house
foreign doctor, Professor Jones. He took her by the hand into a mansion
rose a little decrepit, but still fascinating in its architecture
French, the city limits, with a lot that the authorities
had recently converted to National Park. The first impression
Consuelo was the man who has upset her so much, who spent months with
afraid of him. He saw him enter the room with a butcher’s apron and a strange
metal instrument in hand, greeted them and had not even the nun
with half a dozen sentences incomprehensible and she sent it with a growl
to the kitchen without even looking, too busy with their projects.
She, in turn, watched him at length, he had never seen a
person as threatening, but could not help thinking that was so cute
as a picture of Jesus, gold, with the same beard and Prince
the eyes of an impossible color
The only boss that Consuelo would have on his life, spent years
perfecting a system to keep the dead, whose secret eventually led
for the tomb relief of humanity. He worked both on a
cure for cancer because he had observed that this disease was slightly
common in areas affected by malaria and naturally deduced that
could treat the victims of this evil by exposing them to bites of mosquitoes
swamps. With the same logic, had experiences with blows to the head
idiots from birth or by calling, because I had read in the Gazette of Galen
that due to a brain trauma, a person had become a
genius. It was a convinced anti-socialist. He calculated that if they divided the
riches of the world, every person on Earth would fit least thirty-five
cents, so the revolutions were futile. Showed a healthy, strong,
suffered from constant bad mood, had knowledge of a wise and
hands of a sexton. The formula for embalming was a remarkable
simplicity, as are almost all inventions. Nothing to remove the viscera
empty skull, immerse the body in formalin and fill it with pitch and oakum
to leave at the end wrinkled as a prune and look astounded at
painted glass eyes. Simply extract the blood from the corpse still fresh
and replaced it with a liquid that preserved as in life. The skin, although
that pale and cold, not deteriorated, the hair stood firm and even some
cases the nails were in place, continuing to grow. The only drawback
was, perhaps, a certain smell acrid and penetrating, but, over time, the family
accustomed to. At that time few patients willingly lent themselves
want to insect bites or dressings to enhance the clubbing
intelligence, but the prestige of his embalmer had crossed the ocean and
often came to visit European scientists and traders
Americans eager to snatch the formula. Always starts from the hands
shaking. The most famous case – that his fame spread around the world – was to
a well-known lawyer in town who had liberal tendencies in life and that
Benefactor has killed off the Municipal Theatre in the premiere of The zarzuela
Dove. They took the body to Professor Jones, still hot, with so many holes
of bullets that could not be counted, but face intact. Although considered
the victim as its ideological enemy, for he was a supporter of schemes
authoritarian and distrusted democracy, which seemed to be very close to
Socialism, gave himself the trouble to preserve the body, so good
result that the dead man’s family sat in the library dressed in your best
fact and in right hand holding a pen. They defended the moth and dust
for several decades as a reminder of the brutality of the dictator, who
did not dare to intervene because a thing is to discuss with the living, the other
very different, is to attack the dead.
Once Consuelo has overcome the initial shock and
realized that the butcher’s apron and the smell of his master’s tomb were
tiny details, because in fact it was an easy person to
endure, vulnerable, sympathetic and even on occasions, felt at ease with this
home, it seemed like paradise compared to the convent. There is no
get up at dawn to pray the Rosary for the sake of humanity, nor was
necessary to get on their knees on a handful of dried peas to pay
with his own suffering the sins of others. As in the old building
Sisters of Charity, also circulated in the house ghost discrete,
whose presence everyone felt, except for Professor Jones, who insisted on
deny them because they lacked scientific basis. Although he had his
charge of the toughest tasks, the girl had time for their fantasies without
and no one bothered to interpret their silence as virtues
miraculous. He was strong, never complained and obeyed without question, as you
the nuns had taught. In addition to loading the garbage, washing and ironing
iron, clean the toilets, get daily ice for the glaciers brought in
donkeys and preserved in salt, Jones helped the teacher to prepare
large bottles of formula in the pharmacy, took care of the bodies, took them to the dust and
remora to the joints, dressed them, comb them and colored their faces with
carmine. The sage was pleased with her maid. Until she came to work for you,
worked alone in the utmost secrecy, but with time become accustomed to
presence of Consuelo and allowed him to help in the laboratory, as found
shut that woman did not represent any danger. Insurance to have
always around when you need it, take off my coat and hat, and without
look back, let them take the fall for her in the air before reaching the
as ground and never failed, it turned out to have a blind trust. It was thus
that apart from the inventor, Consuelo was the only person in possession of the formula
wonderful, but this knowledge is not served him for nothing, because the idea
betraying the boss and sell the secret never entered his mind.
I hated messing with corpses and did not understand the reason they are
embalmed. I thought that if this were necessary, the nature it would have provided
and would not allow the dead to rot. However, at the end of life,
found an explanation for this ancient desire of mankind to conserve
their dead, to find that the bodies having at hand was more
easy to remember them.
Many years passed smoothly to Consuelo. Do not know the
stuff to your back, because of the cloister of the nuns had to the house of
Professor Jones. There was a radio to hear the news, but rarely
care, only listened to opera records that the boss put in his magnificent
phonograph. Nor arrived newspapers, journals only because the
wise indifferent to facts that occurred in the country or the world, was very
more interested in abstract knowledge, history or
predictions of a hypothetical future, than in the ordinary emergencies
present. The house was an immense labyrinth of books. Along the walls, from
floor to ceiling, accumulated volumes mysterious, with bindings
the smell of leather, soft to the touch and creaky, with the titles and the gold corners,
transparent sheets and delicate prints. All the works of thought
Universal were put on those shelves in no particular order
apparent, even though the teacher knew exactly the place of each one. The
Shakespeare’s works lay along the Capital, the maxims of Confucius
alongside the Life of Seals, maps of ancient mariners lay along
Gothic novels and poetry of India. Consuelo spent several hours each day
cleaning the books. When finished the last stand had to start all over
again, but that was his job more enjoyable. Took them gently
shook them as if the dust and caress them as if leafing through a dip
minutes in the private world of each one. He learned to know them and
locate them on the shelves. Never dared to borrow them, so
secretly withdrew them, took them to the room, read them into the night and
Next day put them in place.
Consuelo never knew much conflict, disasters or progress of their
time, but learned in detail of student unrest in the country,
because it occurred when Professor Jones walked through the city center and
little was being killed by guards on horseback. It fell to him to bring it to her
patches on bruises and feed it with broth and beer by the bottle until
that the teeth had become loose again became firm. Dr.
had gone out to buy some products indispensable to their
experiences, without remembering that it was Carnival, a festival that all licentious
years had a balance of injuries and death, although this time the
drunken brawls pass unnoticed compared to the impact of other
events that shook the sleeping consciences. Jones crossed the
street when the noise burst. In fact, the problems had begun
two days earlier, when college students elected the queen of
Beauty through the first democratic vote in the country. After they have
crowned flowered profusely and making speeches, in which some are
released starting to talk the language of freedom and sovereignty, the youth decided to
parade. There was never anything like the police took forty-
eight hours to respond and did so at precisely the moment that Professor Jones
leave a pharmacy with their bottles and packages. He saw forward, saber
in hand, guards at a gallop and does not swerve from the path or hurried
step, because he was distracted thinking about some of their chemical formulas and
All that noise seemed in very bad taste. Regained consciousness
a stretcher to the hospital of the poor, then stammered
change their path and leading to his house, holding the teeth with the hand
to prevent roll around the street. While he was recovering submerged in
their pillows, the police arrested the ringleaders of the revolt and put them in a
dungeon, but not beat them, among whom were some
children from different families. These arrests have produced such a wave of
solidarity that the next day if they were present in prisons and barracks
dozens of young men offering themselves as voluntary prisoners. They locked us to
as they arrived, but a few days later had to release them because they
there was no place for so many boys in the cells and the plaintive cry of mothers
began to disturb the digestion of the Benefactor.
Months later, when Professor Jones had managed to steady the
teeth and began to recover from the moral dents, students
made to revolt, this time with the complicity of some junior officers.
The Minister of War crushed the rebellion in seven hours and they could
left to escape into exile, where they remained seven years, until the death of
Blessed Homeland, who had the luxury of dying peacefully in his bed
and not a lamp hung by the testicles of the square, as sought by the
their enemies, and feared the U.S. ambassador.
With the death of the old caudillo and the end of that long dictatorship,
Professor Jones was about to ship back to Europe, convinced
like many others – that the country would sink irretrievably in
chaos. For its part, the Ministers of State, appalled by the possibility of
a popular uprising, quickly got together and someone proposed calling the
doctor, thinking that if the body of the Cid Cid strapped to his horse
been able to employ the Moors, there was no reason for the body
Life President of the embalmed not to continue to govern in its
armchair bully.
The sage was presented accompanied by Consuelo which led to
briefcase and impassively watched the red-roofed houses, trams, 5
men with straw hats and shoes in two colors, the unusual mixture and luxury
Palace and fuss. During the months of agony, and security measures
had been careless and in the hours following the death reigned most
confusion. No one stopped the visitor and her maid. Crossed
corridors, halls and finally entered the room where the man lay
powerful – the father of a hundred bastards, Lord of life and death of
his subjects and possessed of an incalculable fortune – in his nightshirt,
with kid gloves and soaked in piss. On the side of honor, members of
his entourage and some concubines shaking as five ministers hesitated
escape from abroad or stay to see if the mummy of a Benefactor
could continue to lead the destinies of the country. Professor Jones stopped
with the corpse watching him with interest entomologist.
– Doctor, is it true that you can save the dead? – Asked a
fat man with a mustache similar to the dictator.
– Yes
– So I encourage you to not do it, because now I who governs,
I, who am his brother, the same fiber and the same blood – the other threatened
showing a large pistol tucked in his belt.
The Minister of War appeared at that time by an arm and taking the
scientist, pulled him aside to speak to him alone.
– It is not embalm us to think the President …
– Yes.
– It’s best not to get into this, because now I’m the boss, who
the army is at hand.
Puzzled, the teacher left the Palace followed by Consuelo. Never
reached or who do not know the reason why they called. He left muttering
there was no way to understand these people and the best tropical
would return to his beloved hometown, where he worked the laws of
logic and civility and which should never have left.
The Minister of War the Government took office without knowing exactly
I should do, because he had always been under the ferule and the Benefactor
could not remember ever in his entire career, having taken a single
initiative. There were moments of uncertainty, because the people refused to believe
the President for Life was really dead and thought that the old
extended at the coffin of pharaoh was a scam, another trick witch
to fool their enemies. People shut themselves in their homes without
dare to put your nose in the street until the police entered the houses inside
bludgeon to compel them to come out and line up to pay tribute to the posthumous
Your Serene Highness, who was beginning to stink among the beeswax candles and
lilies sent by plane from Florida. Seeing the magnificent funeral presided
by various dignitaries of the Church in solemn dress, the people finally
convinced that the tyrant had failed immortality, came to celebrate.
In a matter of hours, the country awoke from a long sleep and ended the
sense of sadness and fatigue that had oppressed. People returned to
dream of a shy freedom. They shouted, danced, threw stones,
destroyed windows and even some houses of the favorites of the regime were
looted. They burned the huge “Packard” black, unmistakable horn,
in which the benefactor was transported sowing fear in their wake. So
Minister of War dominated the disorder, sat in the presidential chair,
gave orders to calm tempers shot and then the radio, went to
people proclaiming a new order. Little by little, he returned to calm. The
prisons are emptied of political prisoners to leave room for others who were
coming and began a more progressive government that is committed to
put the nation in the twentieth century, which was not a crazy idea, since this
took a delay of more than three decades. At the political wilderness began
seeing the first parties, a Parliament was organized, as it was
a rebirth of ideas and projects.
The day they buried the lawyer, his favorite mummy, Professor
Jones had a temper tantrum that culminated in a stroke. By
concern of the authorities, who did not wish to load with the dead visible
the previous regime, the family of the celebrated martyr of tyranny have a
grand funeral despite the widespread opinion to be buried alive,
because it was still in good condition. Jones tried to prevent by all
means in his power that his work of art was to stop a mausoleum, but
everything was useless. She stood outside the cemetery trying to open arms
prevent the passage of the hearse carrying the coffin of mahogany
with silver rivets, but the driver kept going, and if the doctor does not
away had it would have crushed without the slightest respect. When the drawer was
closed, the embalmer struck down by the resignation, one half of
rigid body and the other half in convulsions. with that burial has disappeared,
behind a marble slab, the stirring testimony of the
formula of the sage was able to fool the decay indefinitely.
These were the only relevant events of the year in which
Consuelo served at the home of Professor Jones. For her the difference between dictatorship
and democracy, were the trips from time to time, the cinematographer to see the
Carlos Gardel tapes, previously forbidden to women and the fact that the
from a fit of rage, his boss had become an invalid who had
treat as a child. His routine has changed little, until that day in July
when the gardener was bitten by a viper. It was an Indian fort, features of
smooth, but tight and taciturn expression, with whom she had not
exchanged more than ten words although he used it to help with the
corpses, the cancerous and the idiots. Picked up in patients as if they were
feathers, put them on his shoulder and climbed the ladder of the strides
laboratory, without showing signs of curiosity.
– The gardener was bitten by a snake – said to Consuelo
Professor Jones.
– When death brings to me – ordered the scientist with his twisted mouth,
preparing to make a mummy in a position to indigenous prune
bushes and put it to decorate the garden. It was already quite old at that time and
began to have delusions of an artist, dreamed of having representatives of all
professions forming his own museum of human statues.
For the first time in his quiet existence, Consuelo disobeyed
an order, seized the initiative. With the help of the cook dragged the Indian
to your room, the last yard, and laid him on his pallet, determined to
save it, because it seemed a sad to see it turned into ornaments for
satisfy a whim of the boss and also because on other occasions, she had
sense an inexplicable restlessness to see the man’s hands, large,
brown and strong, to treat the plants with special kindness. He wiped his
wound with soap and water, made it two deep cuts with the knife killing
chickens and for a long chunk of time sucked his blood poisoned
he would spit into a container. Between two chupadelas rinsing the mouth
with vinegar, not to die too. Then wrapped him in swaddling clothes
soaked in turpentine, purged it with herbal teas, gave him
spider-webs of the wound and allow the cook to light candles
Saints, though she doubted that action. When the patient began to urinate
red, pilfer from the office of teacher Sandalwood Sun, infallible
for flows of the urinary tract, but despite all his care, his leg
began to decompose and the man went into agony, lucid and quiet, without
complain once. Consuelo noted that in addition to panic before the
death, suffocation and pain, the gardener when she answered rapturously
the body or rubbing it applied the poultice. The unexpected erection
succeeded in moving their hearts mature and virgin when he
picked up by one arm and looked pleadingly, she realized she had reached the
time to justify its name and the comfort of so much misery. Making
accountable to their thirty-something years of life, came to the conclusion that he had not, nor
known or seeking pleasure, I was convinced it was a
matter that concerned only the protagonists of the films. He decided to give up this
pleasure and simultaneously offer it to the patient, trying to leave so he
happier for the other world.
I knew my mother so closely that I can imagine the ceremony
that followed even though she has not told me all the details. Not
modesty was useless and always answered my questions with the highest
clearly, but when referring to the Indians used to be suddenly
silent, lost in their good memories. He took the robe of cotton, the skirt,
the linen breeches, undid the braid, as required by the employer, had wrapped around
neck. The long hair fell over his body and well dressed, with his best
attribute of beauty, mounted on the dying man with great delicacy, not to you
disturb the agony. I did not know how to do that well, because there was
experience any of these things, but what he lacked in knowledge
was given either by instinct or by good will. Under the dark
man’s muscles tightened and she had the sensation of riding on
a great and brave animal. Whispering to him words and newly invented
drying the sweat with a rag, slipped to the exact spot, moving with
discretion, as a wife used to make love to an old husband.
He turned it to embrace the rush imposed by the proximity of death, and
joy soon changed both the shadows of the corners. So I was conceived in
bed of my father’s death.
However, the gardener did not die as expected, Jones and
Serpent of the French, who wanted his body to experiment.
Against all logic, he began to improve, the temperature dropped, the
breathing returned to normal and asked to eat. Consuelo understood that without
have done anything for it had discovered an antidote to the bites
poisonous and continued to administer it with tenderness and joy so often
he asked how many until the patient is able to put up. Shortly
the Indian fired up without her trying to stop. They grabbed their hands during
one or two minutes, kissed with a touch of sadness and then she took the
nugget of gold, whose cord was worn by use, and hung it around his neck
your only lover, like shared memory of gallops. He left
recognized and almost healed. My mother said I was going to smile.
Consuelo did not show any emotion. Continued to work as
ever, ignoring the nausea, the weight of the legs and the colored dots which
clouded the view, not to mention the extraordinary product that
had saved the dying. Do not say, even when started
her belly grow, even when the teacher called Jones to give a
purgative, convinced that this swelling was due to a digestive problem,
nor shall the said when, in due course gave birth. Endured the pain
for thirteen hours without stop working and when he could no longer,
closed in the room willing to fully live this moment as the most
important part of your life. He combed his hair, braiding it tightly, tied it
with a new tape, undressed, washed, from head to foot, then held a
clean sheet on the floor and he stood on his heels, as seen in
book on customs of the Eskimos. Covered in sweat with a rag in the mouth
to drown out the screams, made an effort to bring the world the child is stubborn that
clung to her. Was no longer young and has not been easy, but the habit of rubbing the
floor on all fours, to carry weight the ladder and washing until the
midnight, had given him firm muscles with which could finally give birth.
First saw the emergence of two tiny feet that moved as if to give
the first step in a hard way. He breathed deeply and with a
final moan felt that something was broken in the center of your body and a mass
strange slid between his thighs. A huge relief moved her to the soul.
Here I was wrapped in a blue lace, she carefully separated from my
neck to help me live. At that moment opened the door and entered the
cook who, having noticed his absence, had guessed what was to
pass and came running to her aid. He found her naked, with me lying on the belly,
still attached to her by a pulsating tie.
– Riddick, is female – said the impromptu midwife when she gave the node and
cut the umbilical cord and took me in your hands.
– Born of feet is a sign of good luck – my mother smiled soon as he could
– It seems very strong and screams. If you want, I can be the godmother.
– I had not thought it baptize – Consuelo said, but seeing that the other
scandalized crossed themselves would not offend her. – Okay, a little water
holy will not make you ill and perhaps up to go have some advantage. Vai
be called Eve to have the will to live.
– What is the nickname?
– No, the nickname is not important.
– Humans need a nickname. Only dogs can roam
around with one name.
– The father of the tribe of the sons of Eva Luna Moon Let it be so.
Give it to me here, midwife, to see if it’s perfect.
Sitting in the pit of his birth, his bones crushed and soaked in
perspiration, Consuelo looked in my body passed an ominous sign
by poison, but sighed relieved to find that he had no
I do not have tusks and scales of a serpent, at least
none to see. In a way, the strange circumstances of my
design had much more beneficial consequences: they gave me a health
unchanged and that the rebellion that took a while to manifest itself but I
saved the life of humiliation for what was undoubtedly intended.
I inherited my father’s strong blood, because that Indians should be very strong
to resist so many days to the poison of the serpent and the full agony of giving pleasure to
a woman. Everything else I owe to my mother. I had one to four years
those pests that leave the body cratered, but it healed me,
tying my hands so I did not scratch me, anointing me with tallow
sheep and preventing me exposed to natural light for one hundred and eighty days.
I took this time to take the parasites infused with pumpkin and
tapeworm with roots of the fetus and from then on I was good and healthy. I have
marks on the skin, only a few cigarette burns and hope to reach
Old without wrinkles, because the sebum has a lasting effect.
My mother was a silent person, able to hide among the
furniture, getting lost in the design of the rug, do not make the slightest stir,
as if there were, but in the intimacy of the room
shared, was transformed. Began talking about the past or counting
their stories and the room was filled with light, the walls disappear to give
rise to incredible scenery, palaces crammed with things unseen, countries
far invented for her library or subtracted from the boss, put the
my feet all the treasures of the Orient, the moon and all that was beyond,
I reduced the size of an ant to feel the universe from the most
lowermost put me wings to see from the sky, gave me a tail
fish to meet the sea. When she narrated the world
was inhabited by characters, some of which have become so familiar,
that even today, many years later, I can describe the tone of his clothes and
their voices. Preserved intact their childhood memories of the Mission
priests, kept the jokes heard of, and what had
learned in their readings, to elaborate the content of their own dreams and
these materials with a world built just for me. The words are
grace said, and appropriated them, all were his. Sowed in my head
idea that reality is not just what you see on the surface, also has a
magical dimension and if someone wants strongly that the hype is legitimate
and give it a color so that the passage through this life is not so boring. The
called for her characters in her tales of enchantment, are the
only memories that I keep clear of my first year, the rest
seems shrouded in a haze which merge the servants, the wise old man,
English prostrate in his armchair with bicycle wheels and a parade of patients and
corpses, the doctor who attended in spite of his illness. Children
disconcerted Professor Jones, but as he was too distracted while giving
me in a corner of the house, barely saw me. I was a little afraid of him because
did not know if he was doing the embalmed or, rather, had been
that they had begotten, all seemed to be the same tree
genealogy, but their presence did not bother me, because they both lived
in different worlds. I circled the kitchen, grounds, rooms in
service in the garden, and when he accompanied my mother for the rest of the villa,
made it very secret so that the teacher confuses me with
extension of her shadow. The house had so many and so various odors, which
I could walk it blindfolded and guess where I was, the
smells of food, clothing, coal, medicines, books and humidity
joined the characters from stories, enriching those years.
Raised me with the theory that idleness engenders all the vices, idea
sown by the Sisters of Charity and cultivated by the doctor through his
despotic discipline. I had toys that could be seen, although in fact
all that were served at home for my games. During the
days there were no moments of rest, it was considered shameful to keep
hand still. With my mother, I rubbed the floorboards, put the
clothes to dry, the vegetables and migava siesta time trying to weave and embroider, but
I do not remember that these tasks would be humiliating. It was like playing the
houses. The grim experiences of the wise were not cause for
concern, because it explained to me that the beatings and the bites of
mosquitoes – fortunately infrequent – were not the cruel events
boss but therapeutic methods of scientific rigor. With its
confident way of treating the family as if they were embalmed
disappeared, my mother cut the bud any trace of fear and not
allowed the other employees with ideas frighten me macabre. I think
they tried to keep me away from the lab … in fact almost never seen
mummies, knew only that were on the other side of the door. These poor people
is very fragile, Eva, told me, you better not come in this room that looks
can with a push from them a bone and the teacher was furious.
For my peace of mind put a name to each killed them and invented a past
transforming them into beings they also beneficial as the elves and
They rarely went out into the street. One of the few occasions we did was
the procession of drought, when even atheists pray because they were willing to more
an act of faith was a social event. They say that the country was there
more than three years without a drop of rain, the earth cracked, thirsty, died
vegetation, animals perished with their lips buried in the dust, and
inhabitants of the valley marched to the coast to sell as slaves
in exchange for water. In the face of national disaster, the Bishop decided to leave for
the image of the Nazarene street to beg for the end of divine punishment and how it was
the last hope they all hurried, rich and poor, young and old, believers and
agnostics. Barbarians, Indians, black savages, barked furiously
Professor Jones when he knew, but could not prevent his servants
wears the best clothes and were in the procession. The crowd with
Nazarene front part of the cathedral, but did not reach the offices
of Drinking Water Company, because the way a collapsed
unmanageable load of water. In less than forty-eight hours the city was
transformed into a lake, clogged up the sewers, the roads are flooded,
flooded to the mansions, the current took the huts of a village and
coast rained fish. Miracle, miracle, cried the Bishop. ANUIES without
know that the procession was organized after the Weather Report
announced typhoons and torrential rains across the Caribbean basin, as
denounced Jones, chair of its hemiplegic. Superstitious! Ignorant!
Illiterate!, Howled the poor man, but nobody took notice of him. This miracle
made that neither the monks nor the Mission Sisters of Charity had
achieved: my mother closer to God, saw him sitting on his throne
heavenly smile of humanity and thought it must be very different from
fearsome patriarch of religious books. It was possible that one of the manifestations
their sense of humor was to keep us confused without being
never reveal their plans and intentions. Every time we
remembered the miraculous flood desatávamos laughing.
The world ended in the garden railings. Inside the time was governed by
own standards, in half an hour I could give six laps around the globe
land and in the courtyard, a bright moon could fill the thoughts of me
one week. The light and shade determined fundamental changes in
essence of objects, books, quiet during the day, the evening opened to
let the characters wander the halls and experience their adventures;
embalmed ones, humble and discreet when the morning sun streamed in through the
windows, turned to stone in the shadows of dusk and
darkness grew to the size of giants. The area swelled up and
cowered according to my desire, the gap underneath the stairs as contained
a planetary system and the sky seen through the skylight of the attic was just
a pale circle of glass. A word from me, and wham!, Reality
was transformed.
That mansion near the hill, I grew confident and free. I do not
did with other children and was not used to talking to strangers
why do not you came, except a man in a suit and hat
black, a Protestant with a Bible under his arm, with which afflicted the
last year of Professor Jones. I was more afraid of him than the
Chapter 2
Eight years before I was born on the same day when, as a
they were innocent grandfather, the benefactor died in his bed, a village north
Austria came into the world of a boy whom they named Rolf. It was the last
Lukas son of Carlo, the most feared high school teacher. Whether the punishment
body or calligraphy written in blood were part of school education
and not only were supported as fit the conventional wisdom and theory
teaching, so that no parent in their right mind complain
this measure. But when Carl left hands with a boy, the direction of
college forbade him to use the paddle because it was obvious that the start
vertigo hit a luxury that was running wild. To
revenge, students chased his son Jochen and if they could catch it
undid him to punch. The child grew to flee the bandwagon, refusing
nickname, hidden as a descendant of hangman.
Lukas Carlé imposed in his home the same law practiced in fear
college. A marriage of convenience was united to the woman, love is not entered
in any of their plans, regarding it as tolerable in literary arguments
inappropriate or musical but in everyday life. They had married without having had
opportunity to meet each other deeply, and she began to hate him since the night
wedding. For Lukas Carlé his wife was an inferior creature, more
close to the animals that of man, the only intelligent being of creation. Still
which in theory was a woman worthy of compassion, in practice, its
could put you out of it. When after a long walk came to
population, displaced from their home country by the First World War
was about twenty-five years, a teaching diploma and money
enough to survive one week. First looked for work and
then a wife, choosing its not only because he liked the air terror
implied that if you suddenly in the eyes but also the broad hips, which
seemed like a necessary condition to generate sons and carry out the
toughest jobs in the house. Also influenced in its decision two hectares
of land, half a dozen animals and a small income that the couple had
inherited from the father and that he put into his pocket as the legitimate administrator of the goods
The Lukas Carlé appealed to women’s shoes with heels too high and
prefer them in red lacquer. In his travels to the city was paying a
prostitute to walk naked, without any adornment other than that footwear
uncomfortable, while he, dressed from head to toe and overcoat and
hat, sitting in a chair as a high dignitary, reached an elusive
pleasure in the sight of those buttocks – preferably lush, white and
dimples – is swaying with each step. Obviously not touched her. Never
did so because he had a mania for cleaning. As their income does not
allowed to give these luxuries with a desirable frequency, bought a beautiful
French boots that kept hidden in the most inaccessible site of the closet.
Occasionally the children closed the key, put maximum volume and discs
called the woman. This had learned to understand the mood swings of the
husband and I could guess, before he even know when I became
wishes to maltreat. It began so early, to shake and dishes
fell from his hands and broke on the floor.
Carlé not tolerate noise at home is enough, he said, I have to put up with
high school students. The children learned not to cry or laugh in his presence,
moving around like shadows and speaking in a whisper. The skills developed
to pass unnoticed was such that sometimes the mother thought he saw
getting through them grounded at the possibility of becoming
transparent. The teacher was convinced that the laws of genetics will
nailed a game. The children were a total failure. Jochen was slow
and awkward, a bad student, was sleeping in class, urinated in bed, served
for any of the projects outlined for him. Katharina would rather not talk,
girl was just a jerk. One thing was certain: there were no defects
defects in their strain, so that he could not be responsible for this
poor patient, and who knows if it really was his daughter should not get their hands
on fire by the faithfulness of anyone, much less by the woman herself;
Katharina who thankfully was born with a heart murmur and the doctor
foretold he would not live long. So much the better.
Given the limited success obtained with the two children, Lukas did not feel Carlé
any joy with the woman’s third pregnancy, but when one was born
big boy, pink, gray eyes wide and steady hands,
felt comforted. Maybe that was the seed that had always
desired, a real life Carl. I had to prevent the mother broke, do not
was nothing so dangerous as a woman to corrupt a good
seed man. Not seen with the clothes of wool, so it gets used to the cold and
becomes strong, it leaves in the dark, so never be afraid, do not bring those to the neck,
no matter what chore to turn purple, this is very good for development
the lungs, called him, but in secret from her husband, her mother wrap the
son, gave him double doses of milk, cradled him and sang him songs
pack. This system will put on and take off their clothes, to beat him and dote on you,
no apparent reason, closing it in a dark room and then comfort him with
kisses, any child would have led to madness, but Rolf Carl had much luck,
because not only was born with a mental strength capable of resisting what would
destroyed others, but also because the outbreak of the Second World War and
father joined the army ridding it, so its presence. The war was the
happiest period of his childhood. While in South America,
embalmed piled up at the home of Professor Jones and the victim of a
serpent copulated generating a girl whom her mother called Eve to
wishes to bring him to live, also in Europe the reality was not small.
The war the world immersed in confusion and bewilderment. At the time the
girl walked clinging to the skirts of his mother, across the Atlantic is signed
peace on a continent in ruins. But just this side of the sea
lost sleep over these remote violence. Were far more occupied with
their own violence.
When he grew, Rolf Carl became observant, proud, tenacious and
a romantic inclination that the shame as if it were a sign of
weakness. At this time of praise warrior, he played with his
fellow at the trenches and planes shot down, but in secret
thrilled with the shoots each spring, the flowers in the summer,
Golden autumn and winter the whiteness sad. At each station, walked
through the woods to collect leaves and insects that watched with a magnifying glass.
She plucked the leaf notebooks for writing poetry, which soon hid in
holes in trees or under rocks, with the shameful illusion that
someone found them. He never spoke of it to someone.
The boy would have ten years on the afternoon that led him to bury the
dead. That day was happy, because his brother Jochen had caught
Hare and the smell of a stew made with low heat, seasoned with vinegar
and rosemary filled the entire house. Long time since I felt that the aroma and
anticipated pleasure it gave him so much anxiety that only received a strict education
prevented him from lifting the lid and put a spoon in the pot. It was also the day
lighting the oven. He liked to see her mother bent over the huge table of
kitchen, arms immersed in massive, moving rhythmically to the beat of
making bread. Knead the ingredients to making a long roll
cut and each piece was a round loaf. Previously, in times of
abundance, separated a little bit of mass, joined him milk, eggs and cinnamon to
making cakes kept in a box, one for each child every day of
weeks. Now mix the flour with bran and what resulted was so dark and
rough, like a loaf of sawdust.
This morning began with a revolt in the streets, the movement of troops
occupation, voice command, but nobody jumped too because
had exhausted the fear of defeat and the embarrassment they had been not very
to employ in the ominous forebodings. After the Armistice, the
Russians had been installed in the village. Rumors about their violence preceded
Red Army soldiers and a terrified population expected
bloodbath. They are like beasts, they said, open the belly women
pregnant women and fetuses with the throw to the dogs, pierce with their old
bayonets, stick of dynamite in the ass men and make them fly into pieces,
rape, burn, destroy. But it was not. The mayor sought a
explanation and concluded that they had certainly been lucky, because those who
occupied the village did not come from areas most ravaged by the Soviet
war and therefore had less and less accumulated grudges revenge
The command of a young officer of Asian face, came dragging
heavy vehicles with all their paraphernalia, all requested
food, they put their backpacks in many objects of value could
pick at random and shot six members of the community accused of
collaborate with the Germans. They camped on the outskirts and were quiet.
That day, the Russians met people calling them with speakers and
lurking in homes for the undecided trim with threats. The mother put
Katharina a small shawl and rushed out before the troops came in and
will confiscate the hare and bread lunch of the week. With their three children,
Jochen, Katharina and Rolf, walked towards the square. The village survived
these years of war in a better position than others, although the pump
that fell on the school on a Sunday night, turning it into rubble and
scattering shards of desks and slate in the vicinity. Part of
cobbled medieval no longer existed, because the brigade had used the slabs
to make barricades, in the hands of the enemy were the clock
House, the church organ and the last harvest wine, unique treasures
village, the buildings showed no color facades and some bullet holes, but
the group had not lost the charm acquired over centuries of
The villagers gathered in the square, surrounded by soldiers
enemies, while the Soviet commander, with his uniform in tatters, the
routes boots and a beard of several days, the group went by looking at each one.
Head down, curled up, perplexed, nobody sustained his gaze, only
Katharina stared meek in the military and put a finger on the nose.
– It’s mentally retarded? – Pointing the officer asked the girl.
– And so was born – said the lady Carlé.
– So do not put the case to bring.