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Pablo Martín Sánchez, traducido al inglés

Por Madeleine Calhoun
July 2017
Pablo Martín Sánchez es autor y traductor contemporáneo de España. Escribió una colección de relatos ficciones llamada Fricciones que trata de la idea de escribir como una manera de reescribir. Sigue las creencias del movimiento francés de la década de 1960 llamado OULIPO (Ouvroir de Literature Potentielle o, Taller de literatura potencial). En Fricciones Martín Sánchez crea una red de personajes y experiencias diferentes en sus cuentos. Muchos de estos personajes reaparecen en otros cuentos, que subrayan la comprensión de que todo en nuestro mundo ya está conectado. Martín Sánchez toma algunas ideas de otros autores oulipianos como Georges Perec y Jorge Luis Borges y las tuerce a su propia manera para hacer una nueva aventura y experiencia divertida para el lector. “Fricciones” fue escrito originalmente en español y no existe en inglés. Para mi proyecto de graduación traduje trece de los veintisiete relatos. Aquí dos de los relatos “Mirando las flores del lado de las raíces” y “Rue Truffaut”, en inglés.

Looking at Flowers from the Side of the Roots

Imagine, imagine for a moment, that one day you wake up in the middle of night and smell death. Wait, it’s not that it smells like death, no, but that you smell like death. You get up, go to the bathroom and…everything is normal. Except for that awful stench. Without question: you smell dead. The curious thing is that you’ve never smelled a dead person before. Of course, you’ve been to various funerals, including a couple of viewings, but you’ve never associated any specific smell with dead people. Anyway, now you’re convinced that you smell like death. It’s not that it’s such an unpleasant odor, perhaps a little bitter, like stale cheese, but in any case, it’s bearable. Plus, you feel fine, you don’t notice anything strange. You pause to yawn and notice that your mouth is a little dry. You crack your knuckles. Everything is normal, except for that smell. Finally, you head back to bed and fall asleep immediately. When you wake up again, everything is dark and the stench of death is even more intense. You try to stretch out your arm to turn on the light, but your hand hits a wooden wall. Then you try to sit up, but your head smacks against an excessively low roof. There is no doubt about it: you’re in a coffin. But what you don’t know is whether they buried you alive, or if one can still think after death. Imagine, imagine that for a moment. And then, just forget about it.

9, Rue Truffaut

When you get out of the metro you take the first right, and at the end of street, that next left. After that, you take the second right, and then you will find yourself on Rue Truffaut. Yes. Yes Truffaut, like the director. You live in #9, second floor, door 21. The spacious apartment has windows on both sides, so that the sun floods in during the whole day and even part of the night. The thick walls conserve heat during the winter and keep in the cool air during the summer, and the wooden floor brings a familiar warmth of childhood into the room. The neighbors, modest yet attentive, greet you warmly when they run into you in the elevator and are always free to grab a cup of coffee. The landlord of the apartment is practically family, and Saturday afternoons he often challenges you to a chess match. Sometimes, if he beats you, or is just in a good mood, he docks your rent. Through the streets people smile, happily, content to live in a place like this; they hug, laugh, jump, run, and talk lively. The bars are full, the metros are like happy underground worms that wriggle under your feet, and the sun shines cheerfully in the clear sky. So once you get back home after seeing all of this joy, you open the window and, smiling, you kill yourself.
*Extracto del proyecto final de graduación de Bard College, Piecing Together the Puzzle of Contemporary Spanish Fiction: A Translation and Critical Analysis of Fricciones by Pablo Martín Sánchez de Madeleine Renee Calhoun. Para leer el texto completo, en inglés, vaya a:

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