Poem by Antonio Miranda
To Sofia Vivo
Ilustração de Azalea Quiñones (Venezuela)
Sometimes I am myself, sometimes I am another:
everyone is like this, or like that.
I, was no different, and I broke the rules
I was, at the same time, myself and the other
—one on the inside, another for other people
but, I confess, I am the same as everyone else
in a mask that is the other face
of a false dichotomy.
Manichaeisms? Mourning or pleasure?
Neither religious nor romantic am I,
much less ideological or assumed
of anything, in my infidelity,
lack of faith. And, nonetheless, obstinate
almost optimistic because I am realistic
—in the reversal of the contradiction.
I am a little of Virginia Woolf’s Orlando
the Ugly Duckling disguised as Dorian Gray
I was a hero of the comic strips
I dated Hollywood stars, or,
on a more earthly basis, the True Cross and Atlantis
I won the Nobel Prize, the Highest Distinction
of the Brotherhood of the Egomaniac and Suicidal Poets.
I read an unassailable mountain of books
I tried to rewrite them, without any humbleness
I climbed, letter by letter, amazing, delirious steps,
building sterile architecture
in the vicious circle of banal virtualities.
I should rip up all the deleterious phrases,
all the oaths, all the verbal and venial forgeries
that I produced – odious garbage.
I should be ashamed of my false politeness
of my senselessness, my improbity
but I always have the strength of my insecurities
while the credulous, the convicts
cannot stand up to their own contradictions.
I broke the rules, but I swear, it was only verbally.
in everything else, I am pure in my perversity.
I am a saint in my most intimate heresy.
and more unpretentious than my pride.
I mean: deep down inside I am insecure and faithful
to principles that I don’t even follow.
Can you understand? Not even God feels
that pain that I pretend that I really feel
when I plagiarize that poet that I don’t even admire.
You gong against the established order
but, disguised, I am going backwards
and I am not alone, participating this way
in a new Olympic or academic modality.
May those who are of Bacabal follow me
those who wear steel boots, bone earrings
who pray awkwardly, the unarmed
those without libraries, those without meaning.
In Portuguese: Auto-retrato; Autorretrato (nova ortografia)
Página publicada em fevereiro de 2009.