Hola amigo. I write to you from la casa de Carmen. She has a place with her family cerca del mar and she wouldn’t stand for me living on my own one day longer, even though I swear these old huesos can still walk to the bathroom, fetch the paper, write a sonnet- but she’s a strong willed girl like mi Rosa (q descansa su corazón con el dios-soon I will join her in heaven) and she packed my bags before I even had time to protest. I can’t complain anyway, because now I get to see my beautiful grandchildren cada mañana. The littlest one, Lucia, has Rosa’s light between her little fingertips, what great joy she gives me, sitting on my lap and begging for stories.
As for the stories I have many, some of which I’ve confided in you of course, and still others I’ve kept stored up tight in my mind. I thank God each and every day for keeping my mind in tact. Mi cuerpo is frail, like a baby bird, and my hands shake like someone holds a gun to my head, but my mind, my mind is strong as titanium and piedra, must be all of those books that made my brain so fat, I’ve got to thank Raúl for that. Well, some of my memories I could do without, like where is Raúl? I have dream still where he returns to his bookstore, and we smoke cigars together but they are usually interrupted by the sound of plane engines revving. But, I must respect each memory as I do pages of a history book, important pieces of my story, good and bad, woven together to make me stronger.
I feel satisfied with my life. I’ve had a fulfilling career, one that perhaps did not always provide enough bread for our table but always sufficient intellectual substance for me and my children, and I’ve never stopped teaching nor learning, even now to my grandchildren. My children are safe and support their families well, they are important people, more important than I ever was that is for sure. I am so glad they were still young during the Junta because I feel confident each and every one of them would have gotten their asses whooped spouting such strong opinions each day-now we can joke about such things, q raro, how close the lines of comedy and tragedy run no? I am saddened to see how my nation forgets, wouldn’t give one dime for memory and soon I will be gone with all of mine. But I am one of what some might call the lucky ones. I lived my life out to old age, saw my grandchildren safe and sound with their birth mother instead of in the hands of some torturer legacy, the song of mi Rosa is still in my heart. I still feel guilt that I was spared, that perhaps my father’s position in the military awarded me some sort of immunity, but there is no point in regret, no point in revenge, that is what I have learned. Chao old friend, here’s to revolution, and memory.