A benefactor has died Lola Ferrera. It was on this Black Thursday that summer had already turned the air, and its end, juxtaposed with humor and melancholy, coincided with that of the Queen of England. She would have said so many things in her broken voice, like an indecisive reed, if she had known the possibility of this coincidence. In an interview I did with him for “El País” (February 7, 2012), he reminded me of his period cause (“Those were other times”) and during the years we met, until the end of everything she announced in her own way, she did not stop worrying about politics, this food that had been seasoned since she stopped clarifies in a Greek stadium.
But his subject was books, publishing houses (Círculo de Lectores, Galaxia Gutenberg were his), the Book Fair he attended with fervor, which he shared with, for example, Theo Sacristan or Nani Valverde, and the conversation. Her long cigarette, of a woman accustomed to smoking as part of the aesthetic inherited from the secret nights, always accompanied her peculiar voice, which rose and fell, lightened and darkened, as if even that was the explanation for the way of being. Sometimes these modes were permanently activated when contacting friends with whom there was a transient conversation. In this conversation we had near The Palace Hotel, nerve center during the essence of the Spanish literary egoin the whole world she told me some of her favorite names that she referred to as a mother or a friend. Octavio Paz (“there was a passionate vitality ”), Jose Miguel, Peter Esterhazy, Jose Maria Ridao, Juan Eduardo Zunigathe older brother of literature through which she passed, Carlos Edmund de Ory or Nicanor Velez (“Creator of our wonderful collection and passed away in late 2011”). When I asked him about the people he would like to meet, he also mentioned friends of his soul, such as José Luis Pardo, Miguel Moray, Félix de Azua, Manuel Longares, Jordi Lovett… Her care, like that of a mother who knows tastes and disappointments, was to see “everyone happy.”
The world has become more cybernetic, put an end to that fondness for slowness which was among his intellectual passions, which included literature and cinema (she was an actress in her own political story in the film “El sopar” directed by Pere Portabella) and occasional writing to those she had in mind. We were better by letter, as Alfredo Bryce Echenick writes, so she never missed a day, spreading encouragement when she herself was absent. Always true to that editorial maxim that no ego should be left unprotected, he wrote even to those he had never had at his head.
What would be the last weeks of his life had its own chronicle that I received, I guess like others, in my email account, that silent stage that modern life has given us. It was the last August 30 before that strange September in which she died. Lola said she wanted to “see you all & rdquor; but “my doctor prefers me to be at home and not fussing before he sees me in the street (as thin as an Afghan boy).” His feet remained “still inflamed despite baths with substrates and various gels & rdquor ;.
In a twist that was typical of her (moving away from the focus to put it far away on something else), she immediately made me worry about a conference she was organizing in Locarno, which discussed proposals “during the first Great War & rdquor ;. They represent, he warned, “valuable material for analysis, don’t you see it that way?”
I answered her encouragingly, and she made me this offer, which I complied with in a self-centered but inevitable way: “Send me something you’ve written that makes you secretly satisfied ”, she said. And I sent him an article that I had just published here, the title of which was “September Strange.” How strange, September, dear Lola Ferreira. How strange everything, the truth, and the strangest thing, with pain, is death.