Darkness of a Writer in Love (Tinieblas de un escritor enamorado)
COUNTRY OF ORIGIN: Argentina
translated by Prof. Charles Philip Thomas
Tinieblas de un escritor enamorado (Darkness of a Writer in Love) relates the story of a writer, Ernesto, who dies, or is perhaps carried away by his fantasy, while writing a story in which he searches for his love after death. The work relates the risks of allowing heroics, romance and myth to die in search of undying love. In addition, it expresses that one of the most dramatic aspects of the human condition is to be accepted and loved. And, it is in desperation to realize this dream that we frequently are capable of lying, conceding, and as a last resort indefinitely postponing our greatest passion.
In a mysterious world, Ernesto is welcomed by Adelaida, a woman who insists that he must try a new life. She wants to stay with him; not because she loves him, ``stupid ideas from the other world,'' but rather because in his ``catacomb,'', there is earth constantly falling from a crevice in the roof. In her ``catacomb'' there is a fiery crater filled with ash and lava and she's tired of being dirty.
When Adelaida leaves, Dionus enters, who presents himself as a crevice repairer, but it turns out he is a kind of strange and insecure demon. Dionus, after telling his peculiar story, is attracted to Ernesto and offers to find Ernesto's wife in exchange for loving him. Faced with Ernesto's fear, Dionus tries to seduce him and convince him that this is the last chance to try things out in his existence and, even better, without the risk of having to love a hermaphrodite in real life. Confronted with Ernesto's close-minded attitude, Dionus changes himself into a beautiful woman. Melba, Ernesto's wife enters the scene. Ernesto hesitates, but does not accept Dionus's offer. Melba disappears.
Next, Ernesto's dead parents appear. They were anxiously awaiting him because they felt very alone, afraid they would die of loneliness. After a scene replete with memories and reproaches of past events, Ernesto, out of compassion, doesn't tell them he is searching for Melba, but that he returned because of them. Melba witnesses this.
Then Laura appears. She desperately loved Ernesto when she was young, but she died before being able to declare her love for him. She waited for him after death to tell him, but conscious of the fact that he doesn't love her and fearful of his answer, she doesn't ask him for love, but rather that he just say ``I love you.'' Finally, he says it to her, convinced that the letters and the words in themselves don't mean anything. But Melba, who has returned to the scene, hears him.
At the end of the work, Adelaida tells Ernesto that she has found Melba. His wife was about to leave because he had said ``I love you'' to another woman, had considered loving a hermaphrodite, and swore to his parents he had returned for them. Ernesto desperately yells that it's all a lie, that everything that happened is fruit of his imagination, that none of them exist, that they've all been incidents in a made up story, and he leaves to look for Melba. When he finds her, he recognizes that what she saw and heard is true. But he explains to her that these were hollow words to lost souls. Besides, she knows that he, out of fear, lies sometimes. She listens to him and as they look at each other, observed by the others, the light fades.
Works in Translation by
Prof. Charles Philip Thomas