Thursday, December 18, 2014

A most cautious joy...


I imagined it would happen differently. Dancing in the streets of Miami and La Habana; frenzied crowds parading in front of TV cameras; bonfires fed by framed photographs of the old guard; and  fountains overflowing with rum and Coke, a new miracle at Cana: Lie becomes Truth. 

I really thought it would come to us, from the east or from above. But instead it was something much simpler. And capricious. Like flicking the switch that lights up the Rockefeller Center Christmas tree.

Yes, I'm supposed to be overjoyed, but instead I'm guarded.

My parents, who left Santiago de Cuba in one of the Freedom Flights and spent their first nights in exile at the Casa de la Libertad in Miami, would they have rejoiced?  How can a relationship that has never in my lifetime been normal all of a sudden be "normalized"? Is normalization a transition, like democracy with braces? What should we do with the cavities?

What will it mean to my generation, to those of us who forged an identity from the scraps of exile? 

We, who learned to walk on stilts between two lands, between two languages... will we become pieces of the Berlin Wall peddled to sunburned tourists?  Or did we miss that boat already? 

I am overjoyed, I tell myself. Like so many children during this time of the year, I too, at middle age, want to believe. But since I'm out of practice, I must start slowly... with a simple toast I learned from my parents. I will repeat this mantra nightly until the year is spent, so as the clock strikes midnight on that last night of 2014,  I will be able to say without trepidation: "Next year in Santiago!"


Aquí podrán leer un artículo/entrevista de EFE sobre Cartas del cielo en Univisión Boston:

Les recuerdo que el sábado, 10 de enero a las 2pm 
presentaré mi nueva novela juvenil en la librería  
Tattered Cover de la avenida Colfax: 

¡Los espero!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Cómo dices, Lydia, we don't know how we'll feel.
The 60s Chicanos, like me, inspired by Che, despite his political mistakes. Inspired by the only latinoamericanos able to withstand U.S. intervention and domination.
While the eventual lifting of the embargo should improve the life of los cubanos, I imagine them like los indio on U.S. reservations, suddenly exposed to US. I fear the endangered Palomita will become more endangered from U.S. tourism.
Our separation from los herman@s de la Isla will end one day, and both peoples will build something I can't imagine yet. Vamos a ver. - RudyG