212 • pearls around the neck
Author: Paula Saporiti, Argentina, 2009
English translation: Jorge Lucero
Illustration: Tim Gallo
you, the door.
Later you knew, after seeing her that a second impediment, harder to overcome, was waiting: the
fantasy world inhabited by Beatriz. It was an insurmountable wall, against which you bang time and
You saw her that way, retracing mental pathways in front of the mirror. While she was brushing her
curly hair, which fell like silk curtains over her shoulders. Her sight fixed in the crystal.
You were trembling of love for her.
Then came the impotence, which flooded your whole being, realizing that once again you could not
awaken her attention.
As always irresistible, she was ignoring you.
When you approached her from behind you felt she was distant, dehumanized, unreachable. The pearl
necklace embellished her neck and her low neckline: a goddess dressed up to reign over a dream. You
pulled her necklace, trying to get her close to you, while forcibly pulling, and getting it tightly around
your hands, her neck felt to you like a marble column.
Her gray eyes searched for you, and looked at you one last time, while a hail of pearls fell on the floor,
and flooded the blue carpet in the room.
She interrupts her account:
“Don’t wait for her, she will not come”, the strange fortuneteller continues.
“How do you know?”
“She never loved you. She told me.”
Surprised, he moves his lips, whispering.
“… She told her …. She told her….”
He leans forward, over the table, as if hanging on a balcony, towards her.
Whispering like a lunatic lost in a delirium, he asks her, while trying to grab her arm.
“Are you also dead?”
But the small gypsy had evaporated, while the man’s eyes desperately looked for her.
Still resounding in his head the answer:
“The same as she. The same as you.”