Sonnets to Sundry Notes: Casals

Listen! to Pablo Casals playing Bach! It’s all here including why neither he nor Picasso could live in Spain under Franco even though Franco wasn’t as bad as Hitler. There was just something about the Valley of the Fallen and a soccer stadium that was…Visigothic? Blood was crying from the earth and no man paid it mind? Something like that. Anyway, Bach keeps ya honest.

“Jenny” is both a grave wise child and my late Mom, whose name was Jean, Jehan, a name to conjure with. Sorta kid you can take to a classical concert and then a cafe who astonishes you with her insight. Tends to lose her granny at the wrong time, adolescence.

CASALS

When her grandmother took Jenny to see Pablo Casals
After Franco finally died
Jenny thought he looked rather common,
Like a bank clerk playing the cello as a hobby.

But then Jenny had what we call a vision milagroso,
And remembered remembering,
A face in the crowd, a black sheep,
Who’d cross the line.

Carlos had married into Jenny’s family up,
For he was young and terribly handsome,
And already had created a business
From nothing.

But when rain came to Spain,
Carlos left Jenny’s grandmother,
And joined his workers in Madrid.

Some say he survived, and Grandmother said she sees him from time
To time,
In crowd scenes in films,
Carrying a cello case that may be empty
Or maybe not.

Edward G. Nilges 15 Oct 2010. Moral rights asserted, whatever the hell that might mean.

Edward G. Nilges, “After Pan of the Jardine Luxembourg”, pencil, pen and Gimp, Oct 2004 and 2010

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