Memento Mori


Blythe in a jar

 (Photo credit: Valeri-DBF)

Me encuentro en la posición extraña de querer recomendar un cuento pero no querer describirlo. No quiero analizar el argumento, los personajes, o el estilo de la escritura porque no quiero arruinar la sorpresa que el lector se siente al leer “Historia de Mariquita,” de Guadalupe Dueñas. Puedo decir, por ejemplo, que es un cuento corto con narradora personaje, de escritura narrativa-descriptiva y cerrada, con co-protagonistas co-dependientes que existen en un espacio familiar e íntimo. Es una historia cuya narrativa avanza en forma zig-zag por varias décadas, y el título es un síntesis de la historia, aunque no revela al lector potencial que es Mariquita, cuál es su secreto, y por qué el cuento dejará al lector con las sensaciones de risa y de profunda incomodidad. Puedo decir esas cosas pero no son lo interesante de la historia. Nada más puedo decir que deben leer el cuento. Puede que les encantará o les perturbará; les parecerá cómico o horrible. Pero no puedo decir más hasta que lean el cuento.

Today is Spanish Friday, so this post is bilingual. Scroll down for the English translation.

Today is Spanish Friday, so this post is bilingual. Scroll down for the English translation.

I find myself in the strange position of wating to recommend a story but not wanting to say anything about it. I don’t want to analyze the plot, the characters, or the writing style because I don’t want to ruin the surprise that comes fairly early in “Historia de Mariquita,” by Guadalupe Dueñas. I can say, for example, that it is a short story narrated by one of the main characters, written in narrative-descriptive style with a closed structure, whose co-protagonists are co-dependant and exist in an intimate, family space. It is a story whose narrative zig-zags forward over several decades, and the title is a synthesis of the plot, although it does not reveal to the potential reader Mariquita’s identity or her secret, or why the tale will leave the reader wanting to laugh and deeply disturbed at the same time. I can say these things, but they aren’t what’s interesting about this story. The only other thing I can say is that you should read it. Maybe you’ll love it or maybe you’ll hate it; you’ll find it comical or horrible (or both). But I can’t say any more until you read the story.

Review: Historia de Mariquita, cuento de Guadalupe Dueñas, de Tiene La Noche Un Arbol (1958).
Lee el cuento en línea aquí.
Compra la antología de cuentos Tiene La Noche Un Arbol

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About fjkingsbury
F.J. Kingsbury teaches ESOL and Spanish, blogs about languages and language learning, and wishes it were possible to be in the U.S. and Mexico simultaneously.

One Response to Memento Mori

  1. Petra says:

    Nice article makes me want to read the story!

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