Hating Summer by Gleyvis Coro Montanet
Translated by Karen González
—You messed up the form—said the officer as he offered them a new sheet—. You wrote “climatic” and this is a survey of just checking the boxes, it does not admit calligraphy.
- Gleyvis Coro Montanet
- This young author is a Cuban dentist, which is obvious from her incisive writings and her influences as a reader: Willy Cuppy´s The Decline and Fall of Practically Everybody, Mario Vargas Llosa’s The War of the End of the World (which she considers the best book in the world), and Stephen Daldry’s film The Reader (2008) (which helped her to understand that nothing and nobody is really evil, and that reading can be a therapy). Read More.
- The Writer Speaks
- Interview by Juan Ramón de la Portilla.
- “I am seduced by historical and political topics, by people´s conflicts, and by convoking characters more than by lonely ones. My poems and first-person narrative texts almost always respond to an issue with huge social connotations, rather than to a personal, isolated grievance or happiness.
—But we are asking for asylum due to climatic reasons —replied the man.
—The choices are “economic” or “political.” Nobody asks for asylum due to climatic motives.
—We do —insisted the man—. We hate the heat of the summer.
—We do not grant asylum for hating the heat of the summer.
—It’s not a serious reason.
—And what’s a serious reason?
—The political and economic causes listed in the form.
The man scratched his head. He looked at his wife.
—But it’s a very closed-ended question, if at least there were a few lines where we could explain…
—I already told you that it’s a survey of just checking the boxes—replied the upset officer—. If you are going to mess it up again, you’d better give it back to me. We’re running low on forms.
The man and the woman looked at each other sadly.
—Listen —intervened the officer—, just check any of the two boxes and that’s it, don’t be a fool.
—You think so?
—Of course I think so —the officer put his mouth near the opening in the crystal window. He did a mysterious sign, as if asking them to get closer too, from their side, to the crystal in the cabin—. What is the real reason you’re asking for asylum?
—Because we hate the heat of the summer —insisted the man; he then took a pencil, looked at his wife—. You tell me, dear: What reasons are closer to our hatred of the heat, political or economic?
—Check political —she suggested—. It must be the government’s fault.
—It could also be due to the economy.
—Yes, it could —she agreed.
—No —the man was fed up—. The right thing to say is “climatic.”
And he wrote again: “climatic”
—Here you go.
—But…, are you stupid?! —the officer crumpled the form.
The man tried to raise his fist, but the woman stopped him in time.
—Leave it —she said—. Stuck in this cabin and with that uniform, he is probably more upset by the heat than we are.
Edited in English by Joshua Barnes
All facts and characters appearing in this work are fictitious. Any resemblance to real persons, living or dead, is purely coincidental.
Los hechos y/o personajes de esta historia son ficticios, cualquier semejanza con la realidad es pura coincidencia.