Friday, October 14, 2005


'Bravo, Oliveira said, understanding that applause would have been out of place. 'Bravo, madame.'
Without standing up Berthe Trépart turned a little on the stool and put her elbow on middle C. They looked at each other. Oliveira got up and went to the edge of the stage.
'Very interesting,' he said. 'Really, madame, I listened to your concert with real interest.'
What a bastard.
Berthe Trépart looked at the empty hall. One of her eyelids was trembling a little. She seemes to be asking herself something, waiting for something. Oliveira sensed that he should keep on talking.
'An artist like you must be aware of the lack of understanding and the snobbery of the public. Deep down I know that you were playing for yourself.'
'For myself," Berthe Trépart repeated in a macaw voice strikingly similar to that of the gentleman who had introduced her.
'For whom, then? Oliveira asked, climbing onto the stage with the ease of a dreamer. 'An artist can only count on the stars, as Nietzsche said.'
'Who are you?' Berthe Trépart was startled.
'Oh, someone who is interested in manifestations...' He could have run words together the way he always did. All he could say was that he was here, looking for a little companionship without really knowing why.

Julio Cortazar, Hopscotch


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