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Viggo Mortensen, or poems as “homemade bombs” and records of a failure
Buenos Aires, Jul 10 (EFE).- Poems are like a “homemade bomb”, the “flower” of a lie and the record of a ” failure” that the American actor Viggo Mortensen collects in “Branches for a nest”, a collection of poems presented this Monday in Buenos Aires.
“The poems are a lie, the record of a failure in a bomb that could explode. In short, I believe that poetry must be protected from poems, and from poets above all”, affirms, somewhat jokingly, a little seriously, the actor, who achieved worldwide fame playing Aragorn in the “Lord of the Rings” trilogy.
Mortensen, who, in addition to cinema, has dived into music, literature, painting and photography, presented his most recent collection of poems on Monday before a packed audience at the Borges Cultural Center in Buenos Aires.
He did it together with fellow poets Gabriela Luzzi, José Villa and Gabriela Bejerman, writers who are part of the Vox / Lux catalogue, the independent Buenos Aires publishing label that has published “Ramas para un nido”.
In perfect Spanish, Mortensen, 64, who lived in Argentina until he was 11, read half a dozen poems he wrote.
He even allowed himself the humor of dedicating one reading to Club Atlético Huracán, a historic soccer rival of San Lorenzo de Almagro of which the actor is one of his most famous fans.
“This poem, although it has very little to do with football, I want to dedicate to Huracán. I’m not saying it in bad temper at all, on the contrary. I want the cousin from the neighborhood to stay in the First Division (division) because, if not What do we do,” he joked.
RECORD OF A FAILURE
“After trying to write poetry for almost 50 years, I conclude that a poem is the flower of lies that words are. They are never enough, they do not faithfully represent the heart of what I think or feel,” said the New York actor .
Mortensen, who had already published the collection of poems in Spanish “What cannot be written” in 2019, describes the genesis of a poem almost in football terms.
A handful of verses can be born at the dawn of a bad night’s sleep, like a few words that emerge when the head is “half empty” and, even so, it dares to save some lines and discard others in an “ambitious move” creative that dies when “crashing against the wall of defense”.
It is then when the poet, who drew a few sentences from a primal feeling, no longer has the slightest idea of what he wanted to express.
But he keeps going, even though his memory betrays him,.
“I’ve read good poems by others and I’m confident that I can write one. So, there are good poems. But I don’t know if that’s true either. It may be impossible to write a really good poem because it’s never going to be the true representation of the experience, of the feeling or thought that prompted it. A poem is the record of a failure,” he launched.
This is, according to the actor and writer, because “the poem starts from an impossible desire, that of wanting to somehow insert, even minimally or unconsciously, individual, personal experience in a universal context.”
“I keep looking for a link between what I think and what surrounds me, although I almost always end up dissatisfied, denying the connection, regretting it, even hating it. But I keep writing.”
For Mortensen, a poem also “is a more or less well-constructed pipe bomb.”
“If it manages to explode, its fragments can reach someone, put together a new idea, phrase, a more powerful bomb,” he said.
Mortensen knows that sometimes these poetic “bombs” “let themselves be made” when “the necessary words appear”, as that “kid” in one of his poems stammers, a child who, perhaps like he was one day, ” It’s hard for him to imagine that he’s cunning and can survive in a world full of artists.”
Natalia Kidd (c) Agencia EFE