Naiare Rodriguez Perez
Zaragoza, 19 September (EFE) — Barbastro writer Manuel Vilas presented his anthological book of poems “Una sola vida” in Zaragoza. In it, he goes through the days of the week “as if a man were putting his past in order.” “People are time, and lived minutes will not return,” because life is not like if you went to a supermarket and asked for “two for the price of one,” he assures Efe in an interview.
It is a book with a melancholy look that was born as a “literary testament” and opens the door to comedy, as Luis Buñuel did, thanks to a walk through the decisive moments of his life, which makes a stop in Huesca, his “sentimental homeland”.
Q: Where did the idea for time travel come from?
Answer: This is a journey through all my poetry and what excites me the most. I wanted to give them a different and original arrangement. I have been writing poetry for many years, and this book is a kind of testament. I am 60 years old and I think I have written more than there is left to write. There is a certain melancholy of the passage of time, but it occurred to me to interpret it through the days of the week.
“I was very fierce, but time takes away this spirit of struggle and rebellion”
Q: So the week is a walk in time?
Answer: This is an anthology book. I haven’t collected all my poems yet, but this book is different. It’s fresh and made to order. It is as if a person put his past in order. Not in chronological order, but according to a more festive and figurative criterion.
Q: Collect old poems. What did you notice about them after watching them?
A: I was very fierce, but time takes away this fighting and rebellious spirit. Sometimes you blush a little when you see how childishly you said those lofty words. I see that time has passed. We must have different names for each period of our life, because a person changes according to his experience.
Question: In some sense, this genre has always been associated with you?
A: I started out as a poet, but I was hungry alone. I went to romance. I have a communicative vocation and I want to create literature that reaches people. For me, writing without readers makes no sense. I wanted to practice bilingualism between poetry and the novel, although sometimes critics distinguish this.
Q: Is poetry the best way to talk about certain chapters of life?
A: This is literature that can tell about life. There are confessional novels that are beautiful, and poems that are also beautiful. There are many autobiographical books, although poetry has always had this component.
Q: You can find a poem for Huesca. How does this land make you feel?
A: I was born in Barbastro. I cannot explain myself without my geographical and cultural background, namely the Pre-Pyrenees and the cities in the area. This is my sentimental homeland, and when I go there, thousands of memories come up. The barbastro I lived in no longer exists, and when I walk through the city I see ghosts. I walk the streets and think about everything that was before, including people. Now there is nothing, and yet it is my memory. It has great sentimental value.
“I’m an optimist, I don’t believe in the end of the world or anything like that. Sounds like absolute nonsense to me.”
Q: There is another one dedicated to the future poet…
A: This is an attempt to talk to people who will come. I’m an optimist, I don’t believe in the end of the world or anything like that. Sounds like absolute nonsense to me. This humanity is incredible and we have come here to destroy the universe. Climate change is a terrible thing, but I’m sure someone will come up with something at the last minute. The novel also has a sense of humor associated with my geographical origin. I am from the same place as Buñuel (the director was also Aragonese, from Calanda, Teruel), and although we raise the most terrible existential question and the most painful abyss of the human being, we always open the door of comedy.
Q: The name alludes to the impossibility of restoring time. Are we being missed?
A: I want to remind the reader that the minutes that he lives at this moment will not return. The entire book is intended to be a defense of life. The minutes that have passed won’t come back, because you can’t go to the supermarket and say you want 2×1. You must live intensely so that nothing and no one destroys you.
Q: It’s like “Hakuna Matata”…
A: The book also tells about the hardships, anxieties and horrors of the world. Enjoy the world knowing it. There is an affirmation of personal freedom.
Q: We are people, therefore time?
A: Yes, people are time. I wanted to remember it through week symbols. It is articulated in seven days, a concept of time that everyone recognizes.
Question: What poem would you define your book as? Is there a turning point?
A: There is a very important poem that I dedicate to the death of my mother. The name is his phone number 974310439. He is on Wednesday, midweek.
Q: And now poetry?
A: Now I’m with a new novel. I will alternate because if another book of poetry comes, I will go without food three times a day (laughs).
Edited by Isabelle Poncela
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